Jammu and Kashmir Lok Sabha Elections

Grenade Attack On Polling Booth In Kashmir's Pulwama Amid The Fifth Phase Of Lok Sabha 2019 Elections

Written By Aishwaria Sonavane | Mumbai | Published:


  • Stone-pelting is underway in Pulwama, fortunately no loss of lives or injuries have been reported.
  • EVMs and polling staff were reportedly airlifted to 24 polling stations of thick military-infested areas.

At the time when the fifth phase of Parliamentary elections are underway, violence flared up in Kashmir's Pulwama as a grenade was hurled at a government school in the district and a petrol bomb at a polling booth.

During the third and final leg of voting in Jammu and Kashmir, even stone-pelting is underway in Pulwama, fortunately no loss of lives or injuries have been reported.

An eerie silence descended on the streets the district hit by one of the state's worst terror attacks earlier this year, a day before the polling. 

Pulwama, known as the "Anand (delight) of Kashmir" for its congenial climate, innumerable springs and waterfalls, hogged the headlines when a suicide bomber rammed his car into a CRPF convoy on February 14, killing 40 paramilitary troopers.

Since then the campaign for 2019 Lok Sabha polls has revolved around Pulwama and terrorism with parties making nationalism a key poll issue.

On Monday, Pulwama - a part of the Anantnag Lok Sabha seat - are holding elections and all eyes will be on the response of people

EVMs and polling staff were reportedly airlifted to 24 polling stations of thick military-infested areas.

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Gulzar Wani, a grocery store owner, who was greatly agitated when asked about the prospects of Monday's voting. "I don't think that there will be any voting in this area. The machines may return untouched," he said.

Senior police officials believe that the voting may not cross the double-digit mark.

The district has hardly seen any election campaigning by political parties.

The National Conference and the Congress confined their political activities to party offices.

Mehbooba Mufti's PDP  which has a strong base in south Kashmir, is almost missing and party chief Mehbooba Mufti has preferred to stay away from canvassing.

No wall, street or building is festooned with colourful flags and banners of the parties.

Former chief minister and National Conference vice president Omar Abdullah, while speaking for party candidate Justice (retd) Hasnain Masoodi, said voting was essential prevent attempts to abrogate Article 370 which guarantees special status to the state.

G A Mir of the Congress attempted to woo the voters by pointing out the failures of the National Conference and the PDP.

However, a thin attendance of people was seen in their election meetings.

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Security forces working to ensure smooth conduct of the polls have cracked the whip on trouble-mongers.

Pulwama district has 3.51 lakh eligible voters. For smooth polling, the Election Commission has set up 450 polling stations across the district.

The elections to Anantnag Parliamentary seat was divided into three phases, and the two South Kashmir districts Shopian and Pulwama will go to polls in the fifth phase on May 6.

Earlier Anantnag voted on April 23 in which 12.8 per cent votes were cast. This was followed by the second phase in Kulgam on April 29 which recorded around 10 per cent voting.

(With PTI inputs) 


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