An enthusiastic turnout by female voters in the erstwhile Doda region on Tuesday has given a fair hint that women will be major contributors this assembly election.
Women in large numbers could be seen forming queues outside polling booths, eagerly waiting for their turn to exercise the franchise.
The women voters included many young girls who cast their vote for the first time, but there were also those willpower defied their age and strength.
One of them was Amro Devi: aged 98. Devi, hard of hearing, said she has voted since 1957, when she was over 40 years old. She said she voted for change.
"I have seen governments come and go. The living standard of my joint family of 35 has not improved over the years. This time people say voting is for change and I came to participate in it," she said, too weak to even smile.
College student, Atya Wani (18), however, was energetic. She looked desperate to change the messy state of affairs her area is in.
"We have no road connectivity. During rains we have to wade through water to reach our schools and colleges. Education has suffered a lot," she said.
Wani was also critical of political groups who she said were fiddling with communal harmony in the erstwhile Doda region and polarising the political set-up.
"My vote is also against them," she said.
Renu Devi (19), an unlettered girl at Assar in Ramban, said she exercised her franchise to seek help from the government for getting a job.
"I want that a sewing center should be established in the area so that I could get the training and become an earning hand," she said.
Anju Kumari (18) of Chanderkote, a matriculate, said she thinks she may not be able to continue her studies as her family is very poor. She said she wants to do a bachelor's degree in Arts and also wants to study further.
"I hope the next MLA from my area will help me," she said.