Amid protests, very low voting in Srinagar
Most polling stations in the eight constituencies of Srinagar recorded very low voter turnout as the voting got underway for the seventh and final phase of J&K Assembly polls. See Graphicsindia Updated: Dec 24, 2008 15:06 IST
Voters trickled in slowly in Jammu and Kashmir's Srinagar region where polling for the seventh and last phase of the elections on Wednesday was underway amid sporadic protests and a boycott call by separatists.
Most polling stations in the eight constituencies of Srinagar district recorded very low voter turnout during the first two hours.
In Hazratbal and Sonawar constituencies, from where patron of the regional National Conference (NC) party and former chief minister Farooq Abdullah is contesting, only three per cent of the electorate had cast its vote in the first two hours.The figures were similar in other constituencies.
In Zadibal and Idgah constituencies, it was one per cent, in Batmaloo two percent, in Khanyar 4.5 per cent, in Habba Kadal 2.5 per cent and in Amira Kadal 3.5 per cent.
But there were some who felt differently.
Outside the Dhobighat polling station in Hazratbal, Showkat Ahmad, 18, was waiting in a small queue for his turn to vote.
“I am voting for the first time and my need is a government job. I have no other consideration and I hope my vote helps the candidate who gets me a job after winning the elections,” he said.
As polling progressed in fits and starts in the deserted streets, small anti-poll protests were carried out by groups of people in Chanapora, Natipora, Nawab Bazar and other localities of the city.
There were reports of about two dozen bogus voters being arrested. They had been brought to some polling stations by the supporters of candidates.