First phase of AP Panchayat elections underway

Amaravati(AP), Feb 9 Polling for 2,723 panchayats

in Andhra Pradesh was underway with people standing in queues to cast their vote early on Tuesday.

Polling began at 6.30 AM and will go on till 3.30 PM while counting of votes will begin at 4 PM, official said.

Elections are also being held to elect 20,157 ward members.

The polls will be conducted in four phases till February 21 with the first first one being held on Tuesday

According to the Panchayat Raj department, elections were to be held for 3,249 posts of panchayat sarpanchs, 525 have been unanimously elected, while no nomination was filed for a village in Nellore district.

As many as 7,506 candidates are contesting for sarpanch posts and 43,601 are in the fray for ward members.

The elections are being held using ballot paper and without any political party symbols.

The department had said 29,732 polling stations were set up, out of which 3,458 have been identified as sensitive and 3,594 hypersensitive.

All necessary precautions are in place as per COVID-19 protocol amid tight security and PPE kits will be provided to voters infected by the virus, it added.  PTI

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Justice JK Maheswari to be new Chief Justice of Sikkim

The Supreme Court collegium has decided to recommend the transfer of Andhra Pradesh Chief Justice JK Maheshwari to the Sikkim High Court.

The collegium headed by Chief Justice of India SA Bobde has recommended the transfer of Sikkim High Court Chief Justice AK Goswami to Andhra Pradesh High Court as Chief Justice.

Born on June 29, 1961, Justice JK Maheshwari before serving as the Chief Justice of the High Court of Andhra Pradesh was also a Judge at the Madhya Pradesh High Court.

He hails from a small town in Madhya Pradesh named Joura in Morena district.

The Collegium by its December 15 resolution has also decided to transfer Telangana High Court Chief Justice RS Chauhan as Chief Justice of Uttarakhand High Court.

Delhi High Court Justice Hima Kohli has been recommended for appointment as Chief Justice of Telangana.

Hundreds Hospitalized with "Mystery" Illness in Andhra Pradesh

The mysterious disease that began spreading in Eluru city in Andhra Pradesh claimed one life with about 300 residents falling sick.

According to reports, nothing has yet been established as to what caused the disease that saw people suddenly falling unconscious after suffering from symptoms of fits and nausea.

Health authorities could not yet establish the cause of the sudden disease though blood tests and CT (brain) scan were performed.

Cerebral Spinal Fluid tests also turned out to be normal. The probable cause could become evident only after the culture test results came in.

According to district Joint Collector Himanshu Shukla, E-coli results were also awaited.

Himanshu Shukla told PTI that expert scientists from the National Institute of Nutrition and Indian Institute of Chemical Technology from Hyderabad have arrived in Eluru on Monday for diagnosing the cause of the disease.

A 24x7 control room has been set up in the Eluru Municipal Corporation office.

Meanwhile, a 45-year-old man, who was admitted to the GGH in Eluru with symptoms of nausea and epilepsy died.

BJP MP G V L Narasimha Rao, who spoke to state Chief Secretary Nilam Sawhney, said a five-member team of doctors from the All India Institute of Medical Sciences at Mangalagiri here was sent Eluru to treat the patients.

G V L Narasimha Rao said he spoke to AIIMS Delhi Director Randeep Guleria and other experts on the mysterious disease and also made them talk to the West Godavari district medical officials.

Poisonous organochlorine substances could be the mostly likely cause of the disease, the MP said after talking to the experts.