Inside Kashmir

Voting underway for 2nd phase of DDC polls in Kashmir, 196 candidates in fray

Srinagar: Voting is underway on Tuesday to decide the fate of 196 candidates contesting in 25 constituencies during the second phase of District Development Council (DDC) elections in Kashmir valley amid tight security arrangements.

Simultaneously, votes are also being polled for sarpanch bypolls in the second phase in the valley, which recorded 39.11 per cent polling in the first phase of DDC elections.

“As many as 321 candidates, including 196 from Kashmir division and 125 from Jammu division, are in the fray during the second phase of District Development Council (DDC) polls in Jammu and Kashmir on Tuesday,” an official said.

He said there are a total 280 constituencies in UT of J&K (14 in each district), of which, voting will be conducted in 43 constituencies, including 25 from Kashmir Division and 18 from Jammu Division, from 0700 hrs to 14 hrs in phase II.

Similarly, the sarpanch elections are underway in 83 constituencies and total 223 candidates, including 72 females, are contesting in phase II. “Panchs by-polls is also underway in 331 constituencies for which a total 709 candidates, including 157 females, are in fray,” he said.

He further said that 58 sarpanchs, including 29 females, and 804 panchs, including 256 females, have been elected unopposed.

Giving further details, he said that there are more than 57 lakh voters in J&K who eligible to cast their votes in the DDC polls. Of these, he said more than 7.95 lakh voters, including 406845 from Kashmir and 3,88,273 from Jammu, would use their right to vote in phase II.

“Kashmir division has 4,06,845 voters, including 1,94,821 females, whereas Jammu division has 388273 electorate, including 183553 females,” he said, adding 2142 polling stations, including 837 in Jammu division and 1305 in Kashmir division, have been set up to conduct the Phase II of the elections.

He said that special polling booths have also been created for Kashmiri Migrants at Jammu and Udhampur so that they can also participate in the election process.
State Election Commissioner, K K Sharma on Monday urged people to strictly follow the prescribed guidelines to curtail the spread of COVID-19, especially wearing face masks and maintaining social distance, during polling process. He also said that sanitizers, thermal scanner and face masks shall also be provided to the voters, in case they forget to carry their own face masks/ sanitizers.

The DDC elections and Panchayat By-Polls 2020 are being held in eight phases from November 28 to December 19. The counting of votes shall be conducted on December 22.

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