Reyaz Rashid

North Kashmir witnesses low to brisk polling

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BJP candidate, woman injured in clashes, three polling stations witness zero polling

Baramulla: Amid shutdown, clashes and stringent security arrangements, Municipal Polls in north Kashmir’s three districts – Kupwara, Baramulla and Bandipora witnessed from brisk to low polling on Monday in the first phase of Municipal Elections -2018 as 16 wards of Bandipora, 15 of Baramulla, seven of Handwara and 11 wards of Kupwara went to polls.

In Baramulla, Municipal Council has 21 wards, members to six were elected unopposed and polling was held in 15 wards for which 35 candidates were in fray. Out of 26149  votes which included 13378 male and 12771 male votes,  1336 votes were polled including 791 male and 545 female. The total poll percentage recorded in Baramulla MC remained 5.11 percent.

Witnesses said that most of the polling station wore deserted look and witnessed low turnover while as there was some polling in other polling stations. Polling station No 14  Janbazabara B witnessed zero percent polling as no voter turned over to cast the vote while as in adjacent Polling station  Janbazpora A only 1 vote was polled.

However, polling station Kantbagh A  witnessed highest polling as out of 552 voters 299 voters exercised franchise. Besides Sangri Colony B and Sangri Colony-C Gujjer dominated area of Baramulla town witnessed moderate polling with 149 and 192 votes polled out of 933 and 995 respectively.

In Baramulla MC  Congress has 21 candidates, BJP 13 and there are 2 independent  candidates. There are 12 women candidates among 35 candidates.

In Bandipora, amid stone pelting clashes, election for 17 wards of Municipal Committee Bandipora was held with lowest turnout of voters in north Kashmir.

In 23 polling stations out of 16947 votes -8717 male and 8230 female, total 573 votes were polled comprising of 369 male votes and 204 females. The total poll percentage remained 3.38 which is lowest in Kashmir region.

District Election Officer Dr. Shahid Iqbal Choudhary said 23 polling stations were designated for municipal committee Bandipora and 43 candidates were in fray for the ULB election in Bandipora.

“All the nodal officers, observers and other concerned worked day and night for the smooth, fair and orderly conduct of polls,” he said, adding, zonal and sectoral magistrates were deployed at all stations to ensure smooth conduct of polls as well as monitoring the entire process.

A woman Shabeena sustained injuries after being hit by pellets when clashes erupted in Lankreshipora village of Bandipora where polling for Ward 8 was going on. Sources said that a group of youth attacked a police vehicle with stones and police retaliated firing pellets during which the woman got injured. Hospital sources also confirmed that a woman was brought with pellet injuries.

A Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) candidate was injured in a stone pelting incident in Bandipora district. Sources said that the candidate, identified as Adil Ahmad Buhru, is a resident of Plan Bandipora and is contesting from Ward No.15.

Meanwhile, clashes also erupted in Bandipora near Govt Girls Higher Secondary School.

In Hundwara out of 4347 votes, 1216 votes were polled in 13 wards. Candidates of six wards have already won uncontested.

In Kupwara, out of 5636, 1603 votes were polled in 13 wards. Two candidates have already won unopposed.

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