50.53 per cent electorate cast vote during IIIrd phase of DDC polls in J&K

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Polling percentage in Kashmir further dipped from 33.64 per cent last time to 31.61 per cent on Friday

Jammu, December 4:

Jammu and Kashmir on Friday witnessed 50.53 per cent polling during the third phase of District Development Council polls.

Significantly, the polling this time was 1.53 per cent higher than second phase wherein only 49 per cent of the electorate had cast their vote. However, Kashmir continued to register dip in polling percentage as against 33.64 polling during the second phase there, only 31.61 per cent exercised their right to franchise today.

Against this, Jammu recorded 68.88 per cent polling against 65.54 percent last time.

State Election Commissioner K K Sharma said that in Kashmir, Kulgam recorded the highest 64.45 per cent polling, followed by Bandipora (56.73), Budgam (50.18), Kupwara (46.25) and Baramulla (30.9). Pulwama, which had 8 per cent polling during the IInd phase, had 10.87 Per cent polling on Friday.

In Jammu, Reasi had the highest 75.20 per cent polling where two ex-MLAs and brothers, Ajaz Khan and Mumtaz Khan, are contesting as Apni Party candidates in Thuroo and Mahore constituencies, respectively. The former also happens to be an ex-minister.

Zubeda, their sister and wife of former PDP minister Zulfikar Choudhary, is contesting as Apni Party candidate on Budhal Old of Reasi district which also went to polls during the third phase of DDC elections. Zubeda is engaged in triangular contest with Shazia Kousar (Independent) and Shaheen Akhter (National Conference) also in the fray. Incidentally, both Zubeda and Shazia are close relatives.

Sharma said that Rajouri district registered 72.81 per cent polling, followed by border Poonch district (72.18), Jammu (70.44), Kishtwar (70.35), Ramban (64.07), Kathua (62.18) and Doda (59.51).

Of the total 7.37 lakh electorate registered in 33 DDC constituencies including 16 in Kashmir, only 3.72 lakh voters exercised their right to franchise. Of them, 1,64,756 voters cast their votes in the Valley and 2,56,887 in Jammu division.

Except for an incident in which a contesting candidate got minor injury, polling passed off peacefully, Sharma said, adding police have registered an FIR and strict action will be taken against those involved.  

Meanwhile, police in Jammu arrested a person and seized Rs 58,695 which was allegedly meant for distribution among the voters in Marh constituency which also went to polls on Friday. Identified as Gaurav Sharma alias Goldie, 30, he was apprehended when police intercepted his Bolero No. JKO2BT 8770 at village Patniyal.