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26.02 per cent votes polled till 11 am across Jammu and Kashmir

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Jammu: Over 26 per cent turnout was recorded till 11 am in the fourth phase of District Development Council (DDC) elections in Jammu and Kashmir on Monday, officials said. As per the figures provided by the office of the State Election Commissioner, in Kashmir division, Kupwara recorded 14.80 per cent polling, Bandipora 27.49 per cent, Baramulla 21.12 per cent, Ganderbal 25.15 per cent , Budgam 21.14 per cent, Pulwama 3.79 per cent, Shopian 1.24 per cent, Kulgam 3.58 per cent and Anantnag 16.28 per cent voting.

In Jammu division, Kishtwar recorded 36.49 per cent voting, Doda 43.52 per cent, Udhampur 28.65 per cent Ramban 36.39 per cent, Reasi 26.61 per cent, Kathua 35.37 per cent, Samba 38.58 per cent Jammu 42.93 per cent, Rajouri 42.35 per cent and Poonch 37.09 per cent, the officials said.

While Kashmir division recorded an overall polling percentage of 14.87 per cent, Jammu division recorded 37.88 per cent voting till 11 am, they said.

The polling for 34 DDC seats — 17 each in Kashmir and Jammu divisions — began at 7 am but the turnout was less at voting stations in the valley due to biting cold, they said.

While 138 candidates, including 48 women, are in the fray in the Kashmir division, 111 candidates, including 34 women, are contesting in Jammu division in the fourth of the eight-phase DDC polls which began on November 28.

Bypolls to vacant panch and sarpanch seats in the Union Territory are also being held along with the DDC polls. There were 123 sarpanch vacancies notified in the fourth phase, and out of these, 45 were filled unopposed. Polling is being conducted in 50 constituencies and 137 candidates, including 47 women, are in the fray, the officials said.

Out of a total of 1,207 panch vacancies notified in this phase, 416 were filled unopposed. Voting is taking place in 216 constituencies and there are 478 candidates, including 129 women, in the fray, they said.

In the fourth phase, 7,17,322 people — 3,76,797 men and 3,40,525 women — are eligible to vote. Of the total, 3,50,149 electors are from the Jammu division and 3,67,173 are from the Kashmir division, the officials said.

For this phase, 1,910 polling stations have been set up across the Union Territory, out of which 781 are in the Jammu division and 1,129 are in the Kashmir division.

Out of the total polling stations, 212 have been allotted for bye-elections to vacant sarpanch seats and 219 for panch seats.

The officials said that 1,152 polling station have been categorised as hypersensitive and 349 as sensitive.

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