26% voter turnout in Srinagar amid tight security
Union minister Farooq Abdullah is contesting to retain his Srinagar seat after the Lok Sabha elections
Srinagar: About 26% of the 12 lakh electorate in Srinagar Lok Sabha constituency voted amid tight security and poll boycott call of separatists, on Wednesday.
Fourteen candidates, including Union minister Farooq Abdullah, are in the fray.
“The tentative voter turnout for Srinagar parliamentary constituency is 26%,” chief electoral officer of Jammu and Kashmir Umang Narula told reporters in Srinagar. The voter turnout figures might change as last reports from some of the polling stations are yet to be received, he said. Narula said that the voter turnout this time was marginally up from 25.55% recorded in the Lok Sabha elections for this constituency in 2009.
Giving the district-wise break-up of the polling, Narula said the Ganderbal district recorded the highest 45.21% followed by Budgam at 39.05%. Srinagar district recorded a low turnout of 11.46%. Among migrant voters of the constituency, 2,500 cast their votes at polling stations set up in Jammu, Udhampur and Delhi, he said.
The voting in the constituency commenced at 7am and ended at 5pm. Inspector General of police (Kashmir) A.G. Mir said the polling passed off peacefully but an incident took place at Nawakadal in downtown Srinagar after the poll staff and the security personnel had withdrawn.
Two persons were reportedly injured in the incident, Mir said adding further details about the incident are being collected. However, police sources said a 24-year-old youth was killed while two other persons, including a woman, were injured when security forces allegedly opened fire to chase away stone-pelting protesters.
The Srinagar Lok Sabha constituency has 12.06 lakh voters, including 5.72 lakh women, who were eligible to cast their votes at 1,546 polling stations. Of the 1,546 polling stations, only 3.5% were declared as normal. Separatists had called for a boycott of the elections.
While the voter turnout was low in Srinagar district, Ganderbal and Budgam districts witnessed moderate to heavy polling. Union minister and National Conference (NC) president Farooq Abdullah is seeking re-election from the seat. He is up against several other candidates, including PDP’s Tariq Hamid Karra. NC has won the seat every time barring 1971 and 1996 when the party did not contest the polls.
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