With Jammu and Kashmir set for the first phase of municipal elections Monday, security has been intensified across the Valley, with officials maintaining that elaborate arrangements have been made in all districts.
According to the state Election Commission, 2,990 candidates are contesting in the four phases of urban local polls. For Phase 1, there are 1,283 candidates contesting 422 seats.
On Sunday, senior police officials told The Indian Express that while security has already been in place for the polls, checking of vehicles has been further intensified in all districts of the Valley, especially in areas where polling will be held Monday. They said 400 more companies of central forces are also engaged for the polls.
“Checkpoints have been set up in all areas, and vehicle (checking) has been intensified. We are taking all measures with regard to security and otherwise to ensure smooth polls,” said a J&K Police officer. Candidates have been provided security and accommodated at safe areas, officers said.
The Joint Resistance Leadership comprising Syed Ali Shah Geelani, Mirwaiz Umar Farooq and Mohammad Yasin Malik has called for a boycott of the municipal and panchayat polls.
Police have arrested several Hurriyat activists and put prominent leaders, including Mirwaiz, under house arrest. Geelani was already under house arrest, while Malik was recently arrested.