J&K Guv meets Rajnath, briefs about ULB polls, situation

P L Uniyal. Dated: 10/11/2018 3:01:03 PM

NEW DELHI, Oct 10: Jammu and Kashmir Governor Satyapal Malik Wednesday met the Union Home Minister Rajnath Singh and discussed the situation in the state, where the elections to the urban local bodies are underway, officials said.
During the half-an-hour meeting, the governor apprised Rajnath about the law and order in the state, particularly in Kashmir valley.
The Governor also briefed the Union Home Minister on the ongoing urban local bodies polls in Jammu and Kashmir, an official privy to the meeting said. The state is currently under the governor's rule and Malik is the administrative head of the state.
The second phase of the four-phased Urban Local Bodies polls held on Wednesday.
Threats from militant groups kept a majority of people away from polling booths in Kashmir valley where the turnout was a paltry 8.3 per cent in the first phase of the polling Monday. Jammu and Ladakh divisions saw over 65 per cent of the electorate casting vote in the first phase of urban local body polls on Monday. While in second phase today, only 31.3 percent voting was recorded across the state. In Jammu division 78.6 percent polling was witnessed in 214 wards that went to polls today while Kashmir division witnessed average 3.4 percent polling in 49 wards with Bandipora recording the highest 35.6 percent voting.
The election process is underway to elect 4,130 village headmen, 29,719 Panchayat members and 1,145 ward commissioners in the state. A total of 3,372 nominations have been filed for 1,145 municipal wards. The next phases will take place on October 13 and 16.
The urban local body polls were announced last month. Two major political parties -- the National Conference and the PDP -- have boycotted the elections accusing the Centre of not taking a firm stand on protection of Article 35-A of the Constitution, which is facing a legal challenge in the Supreme Court.
Militants have issued threats to anyone participating in these polls, resulting in absence of any campaigning by the candidates. Two National Conference workers were killed last week. In dozens of wards, especially in South Kashmir, no candidate filed nomination papers. Candidates who are contesting have been moved to safe locations and their details have not been made public.



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