Thu. Jun 20th, 2019

LS polls Phase-II: Budgam erupts again on polling day, lady sustains pellet wounds

Amid shutdown, clashes rock Srinagar areas

Srinagar: The protests, shutdown, internet gag and wounding of a lady in Central Kashmir’s Budgam district marked the second phase of Lok Sabha polls.
The Srinagar and Udhampur Lok Sabha constituencies went for polls Thursday amidst two-pronged security arrangements. At least 24 candidates were in the fray for two Lok Sabha constituencies where over 29.81 lakh voters decided their fate.
The twin constituencies Srinagar and Udhampur have 2, 981, 083 registered electors including 1,543,571 males, 1,416,387 females, 21,056 service voters (20,780 males and 276 females) and 69 transgender voters.
In Srinagar, authorities had set up 1716 polling stations across the Srinagar parliamentary constituency to facilitate the polling. Official figures suggested that 80 per cent of the polling booths in Srinagar, Budgam and Ganderbal were falling in hypersensitive category while remaining 20 percent have been declared as sensitive.
“The polling staff and the machinery including electronic voting machines have reached the designated polling stations in all three districts,” said an official.
The candidates in the fray were Sheikh Khalid Jehangir of Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP), Aga Syed Mohsin of Peoples Democratic Party (PDP), Abdul Rashid Ganie of J&K National Panthers Party, Dr. Farooq Abdullah of National Conference (NC), Showkat Hussain Khan of Janta Dal United, Abdul Khaliq Bhat of Shiv Sena, Irfan Raza Ansari of Peoples Conference (PC), Nazir Ahmad Lone of Rashtriya Jankranti Party, Nazir Ahmad Sofi of Manavadikar National Party, while Bilal Sultan, Sajjad Ahmad Dar, Abdul Rashid Banday are contesting as independent candidates.
The constituency was earlier represented by Dr. Farooq Abdullah who emerged victorious in by-elections in 2017. He defeated his close rival Nazir Khan of People’s Democratic Party (PDP) candidate by 10,766 votes. The seat was left vacant after Tariq Hamid Karra’s resignation. Tariq Karra who was PDP founder had resigned from the party as well as from parliament following which he joined Congress.
In Udhampur Lok Sabaha constituency, Tilak Raj Bhagat of Bhujan Samaj Party, Dr. Jitendra Singh of Bhartiya Janata Party, Vikramaditya Singh of Indian National Congress, Harsh Dev Singh of JKNPP, Ch. Lal Singh of Dogra Swabhiman Sangathan Party, Mohammad Ayub of Navrang Congress Party, Meenakshi of Shiv Sena and Bansi Lal, Rakesh Mudgal, Shaber Ahmad, Garib Singh and Firdous Ahmed all independents were in fray.
The Udhampur parliamentary seat has 16, 85,779 electors of which 1,665,467 are registered as general voters and 20,312 as service voters. For the smooth conduct of election in the PC, the Election Commission of India has established 2,710 polling stations.
The constituency was represented by Dr. Jitendra Singh of Bhartiya Janata Party (BJP). He had defeated his nearest rival Ghulam Nabi Azad of Congress. Singh secured 487,369 votes while Azad managed to bag 426,393 votes.
However, amid complete shutdown in Kashmir poll bound areas, thin voting was registered Thursday that started from 07:00 am to 06:00 pm. The protests and clashes also erupted at many places in the poll bounds areas including Budgam where a woman sustained pellet injuries during the clashes near polling station. Reports said that clashes erupted between youth to and government forces in Hafroo Chadoora village.
Earlier, clashes erupted in several parts of the district amid polling for the second phase of parliamentary polls in Jammu and Kashmir. Official sources said that youth pelted stones on government forces deployed for polling duty and polling stations, while as the forces resorted back with aerial firing. In which lady was hit by pellet and she was referred to SMHS hospital for specialized treatment.
Clashes also erupted in many Srinagar areas including Batamaloo, Chattabal, and others during which forces used tear gas canisters to disperse the agitating youth. Meanwhile, police officials said that barring some stone pelting incidents, the phase-II of LS polls culminated peacefully.

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