Nearly 25 per cent polling in JK till 11 am

Nearly 25 per cent polling in JK till 11 am
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Jammu: Nearly 25 per cent polling was recorded in Jammu and Baramulla Lok Sabha constituencies of Jammu and Kashmir till 11 am Thursday, an election official said.

Jammu Lok Sabha constituency recorded 32.52 per cent voter turnout, with Samba district registering the highest 35.91 per cent voting till 11 am, they said, adding Baramulla Lok Sabha constituency registered 14.34 per cent polling till 11 am.

Voting began at 7 am in Jammu Lok Sabha constituency amid tight security and has been peaceful so far. Voters in Samba, Jammu, Rajouri and Poonch districts queued up early in the morning to exercise their franchise, officials said.

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The Jammu parliamentary constituency, which has the highest number of 24 candidates among all seats in the state, is spread over four districts of Jammu, Samba, Poonch and Rajouri covering 20 Assembly segments.

Till 11 am, Jammu district recorded 30.57 per cent polling, Samba 35.91 per cent, followed by Rajouri district with 30.80 per cent and Poonch district registered 32.83 per cent voting, they said.

People along the LoC in Rajouri and Poonch districts too have come out to vote in large numbers.

In Baramulla Lok Sabha seat, Kupwara district registered the highest 19 per cent polling, followed by Bandipora with 12.63 per cent and Baramulla 11.40 per cent, while Kashmiri migrants polled 19.36 per cent votes for Baramulla seat, a poll official said.

The Jammu Lok Sabha seat was won by BJP’s Jugal Kishore in the 2014 general elections, defeating veteran Congress leader and two-time MP Madan Lal Sharma by a margin of over 2.57 lakh votes.

Kishore is facing a tough contest this time as the National Conference is extending support to Congress candidate and former minister Raman Bhalla, while the PDP has decided not to field any candidate from the Jammu region.

The Jammu parliamentary seat has the highest number of 20,05,730 lakh voters, including 9,64,834 women and 20 transgenders, officials said, adding 2,740 polling stations, including dozens near the LoC and the International Border (IB), have been set up for the polling.

Baramulla constituency will have a first-time parliamentarian in the Lok Sabha as none of the nine candidates in the fray have earlier been elected to either Lok Sabha or the Rajya Sabha.

PDP stalwart Muzaffar Hussain Baig had won the 2014 Lok Sabha election from Baramulla constituency but he chose not to seek re-election this time. Baig had defeated his nearest rival Sharief-ud-Din Shariq of National Conference by a margin of 29,219 votes.