Indian Express

43 pc voters turnout recorded in Jammu and Kashmir

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Over 43 per cent of 13.57 lakh voters cast their votes in the last leg of the five-phased polls on Wednesday in Jammu and Kashmir where 19 candidates are in the fray for the two Lok Sabha seats of Baramulla and Ladakh.

Baramulla constituency, from where National Conference sitting MP Sharief-ud-din Shariq is locked in multi-cornered contest, recorded 39.6 per cent polling while Ladakh registered a poll turn out of 65 per cent to choose their representative among the four candidates in the fray.

Baramulla had recorded a voter turnout of 41.84 per cent in the 2009 Lok Sabha polls, while Ladakh had recorded a poll turnout of 71.86 per cent five years back.

“The tentative voter turnout for the Baramulla Parliamentary constituency is 39.6 per cent, while Ladakh constituency registered a voter turnout of 65 per cent,” Chief Electoral Officer of Jammu and Kashmir Umang Narula told reporters here.

The voter turnout figures might change as last reports from some of the polling stations are yet to be received, he said.

In Baramulla constituency, Kupwara district registered the highest voter turnout of 63.19 per cent followed by Bandipora district at 35.65 per cent.

Baramulla district recorded a voting percentage of 25.04 per cent. The constituency has a total of 11,96,120 electorate including 5.45 women, Narula said.

Among the 1,59,631 voters in Ladakh constituency, Kargil district led in the voting turnout with 65.80 per cent casting their ballots. Leh district which is also part of the constituency witnessed a turnout of 64.0 per cent, he said. The voting in the two constituencies began at 7 AM on a slow note but picked pace as the day progressed-faring much better than Anantnag and Srinagar parliamentary Lok Sabha
seats, which went to polls on April 24 and April 30, recording a low voter turnout of 27 per cent and 26 per cent respectively.

While polling has been peaceful in Ladakh seat, there were several incidents of violence reported from various parts of Baramulla constituency since yesterday, including attacks on two polling stations and a security forces camp, which left five security personnel injured.

Meanwhile, militants opened fire on a police station falling under Sopore Assembly segment in the Baramulla Lok Sabha constituency, police sources said. The ultras fled after the policemen retaliated, they said.

There was no casualty reported in the brief exchange of firing which took place at around 7.40 PM, they said.

Sopore Assembly segment, the home town of Parliament attack convict Mohammad Afzal Guroo and chairman of hardline Hurriyat Conference Syed Ali Shah Geelani, recorded the lowest turnout of just 1.02 per cent.

It was the only of the 15 Assembly segments that form the Baramulla Lok Sabha constituency where the turnout was in single digit.

Incidents of stone-pelting were reported from many places in Baramulla town, Palhallan and Bandipora towns but there was no report of any injury, officials said.

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