Kashmir municipal polls: Kashmir records 4.2% voter turnout in final phase

Srinagar: The low turnout trend continued through the final of the 4-phased election to Urban Local Body polls, recording a abysmal 4.2 percent on Tuesday.

According the Chief Electoral Officer, 25 wards Srinagar recorded 4.0 percent while 11.3 percent electorate cast their vote for 12 wards in Ganderbal in last phase. The overall voter turnout in the final phase is 4.2 percent. The total electorate for the final phase was 250794 and 156 candidates were in fray for Srinagar and Ganderbal districts.

In the first three phases polls, a majority of people stayed away from polling booths in Kashmir Valley for where the turnout was 8.3 per cent only in first phase, 3.4 in phase-II and 3.5 percent in penultimate phase.

Polling in both was by and large peaceful in the first three phases of four-phases of election to urban local bodies, which has been boycotted by two main regional parties – the National Conference (NC) and the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP).

Eight municipal bodies spanning across six districts — all in Kashmir valley – were scheduled to go for polls in the final phase. However, out of the eight, only two see the voting. There is no contest in the rest of the six bodies.

The Ganderbal Municipal Committee has 12 wards out of the 17 in total. 25 wards in the Srinagar Municipal Corporation (SMC) are voting in the summer capital of the state.

Only these 37 wards see poling in which 156 candidates are in the fray — 38 in Ganderbal and 118 in Srinagar including 5 candidates of the one ward going for re-poll . Five candidates from Ganderbal and one from Srinagar have been elected unopposed.

The rest of the bodies – Pattan in Baramulla district of north Kashmir, Pampore, Pulwama and Khrew in Pulwama district, Shopian Municipal Committee in Shopian district and Dooru Verinag in Anantnag district, all in south Kashmir, will see no voting.

Together these six bodies have 90 wards. While candidates from 11 wards out of the total 13 in the Pattan municipal body have been elected unopposed, two wards received no nomination papers.

Not a single nomination paper was submitted in any of the 13 wards of the Khrew municipal body. In the Pampore municipal body, which has 17 wards, five candidates were elected unopposed, while 12 wards received no nomination papers.

Out of the 13 wards in Pulwama municipal body, no candidate was in the fray in 11 wards while two candidates were elected unopposed.

In the 17 wards of Shopian, 12 were elected without contest, while five wards received no nominations.

While one ward received no nomination in the municipal body of Dooru Verinag, 16 candidates were elected uncontested.

In total, out of the 132 wards across the eight bodies 44 wards received no nominations, while 52 wards saw candidates getting elected without contest.

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