INDIA VOTES 2024: In first Lok Sabha poll after Article 370 abrogation, Srinagar sees highest vote since 1996 : The Tribune India

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INDIA VOTES 2024: In first Lok Sabha poll after Article 370 abrogation, Srinagar sees highest vote since 1996

37.98% turnout witnessed in absence of call by separatists to boycott election

INDIA VOTES 2024: In first Lok Sabha poll after Article 370 abrogation, Srinagar sees highest vote since 1996

People wait in a long queue to cast their vote at a polling booth during the fourth phase of the General Election in Srinagar on Monday. PTI



Naseer Ganai

Srinagar, May 13

As the Srinagar Lok Sabha seat recorded its highest voter percentage since 1996 today, the constituency, earlier known for its low turnout and history of boycotting polls, witnessed long queues outside the polling stations across five districts.

Unexpectedly, the south Kashmir districts of Pulwama and Shopian saw a surge in voter turnout, contrasting past election boycotts. This marked Kashmir’s first election after the abrogation of Article 370 on August 5, 2019.

“I have come to vote for the first time. I believe my vote would contribute to the change which the political parties of the region are seeking,” said a youth outside a polling booth in Pulwama.

Riyaz Ahmad Bhat, a resident of Naira in Pulwama, said people had faced immense problems over the past six years, with no one to listen.

In old city Srinagar, another voter emphasised the necessity to vote after the abrogation of Article 370. While many voters insisted that the abrogation of Article 370 was unjustified and it had prompted them to vote, for others the major concerns included unemployment, rising electricity bills and inflation across the region.

The voter turnout in the constituency steadily increased as voters participated without fear, showing initiative in casting their votes. Brisk voting was observed in the Ganderbal area, including Kangan, Wangath and other regions. There were a total of 17.48 lakh eligible voters in Srinagar, with 23 per cent exercising their franchise by 1 pm.

By 3 pm, nearly 30 per cent voter turnout was recorded in the constituency with Kangan area in Ganderbal district recording highest turnout at 55.55%, while Habba Kadal in old city Srinagar recorded the lowest at 13.25%. By 5 pm, things changed completely. The constituency recorded a 37.98 per cent turnout by 5 pm in the absence of any call for poll boycott by separatists.

#Kashmir #Lok Sabha #Srinagar


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