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519 votes cast as 20000 security men keep guard in Budgam re

519 votes cast as 20000 security men keep guard in Budgam re

Re-polling at 38 polling stations in Budgam district in Srinagar parliamentary constituency began on Thursday amid tight security arrangements.

The repoll was ordered in Chadoora, Chrar-e-Sharief, Khansahib and Beerwah areas in Budgam after widespread street protests on Sunday killed eight people and saw only 7.4 percent turnout. He said polling concluded peacefully at all the 38 polling stations spread over five assembly segments of Budgam district.

This is published unedited from the IANS feed.

"Only 709 of the 34,169 voters exercised their franchise across all the 38 polling stations by the time the polling ended at 4pm", the newspaper quoted an election official as saying.

Paramilitary soldier walk near a polling station at Badran Birwah.

Seven candidates are in the fray for the Srinagar Lok Sabha seat but the contest is mainly between the National Conference's Farooq Abdullah and the PDP's Nazir Ahmad Khan.

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This was the lowest voting in the last three decades anywhere in Jammu and Kashmir, where a separatist campaign raging since 1989 has left thousands dead.

Shantmanu said the poll process at all the polling stations will be videographed and one micro-observer from central government offices will also be deputed for each polling station where repolling is being conducted.

The NC wrote to the Chief Electoral Officer of Jammu and Kashmir and also to the ECI and put on record its concerns about the electoral process ahead of the re-poll.

Authorities had deployed over 20,000 security personnel to ensure smooth re-polling in Budgam district after Sunday's violence.

The by-poll result will be declared on April 15.

Shantmanu refrained from speculating on the prospects for the postponed bypolls in Anantnag Lok Sabha constituency.


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