SRINAGAR: A 102-year-old man, batting for jobs for youth to tackle the drug menace in Jammu and Kashmir, went out to vote at a polling station in Reasi here, in the second phase of elections on Friday.

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Voting began in the second phase of elections in the Jammu parliamentary constituency on Friday, with over 17.81 lakh electorates eligible to vote for 22 candidates.

“This generation of youth is getting destroyed due to the drug menace. They are idle as there are no jobs. To tackle the drug menace in J and K, the government should provide jobs to the youth. Whichever government comes to power, they should provide jobs to save this young generation,” Haji Karamdin, who voted at a polling station in Reasi.

Brought to the polling station by his kin, Karamdin was received by the presiding officer with red flowers as a welcome step to strengthen democracy.

“I am very happy to vote at this polling station at this age. I have always voted. This journey is continuing even today at the age of 102,” Haji said.

Haji is one of 666 persons above the age of 100 years who are registered to vote in the Jammu Lok Sabha constituency. The Jammu Lok Sabha seat is one of the 89 constituencies in 13 states and Union territories across the country going to polls on Friday.

A total of 17,80,835 voters, including 9,21,095 male and 8,59,712 female voters, besides 28 third-gender people, are enrolled in the Jammu Lok Sabha constituency, the officials said.

Early morning, voters were seen heading for the polling stations before polling began, officials said, adding that long lines of voters have been seen in various polling stations in Jammu city.

The sitting MP Jugal Kishore Sharma of BJP is eyeing a third term after winning the seat for BJP in the 2014 and 2019 Lok Sabha elections.

This is the first major electoral battle after the abrogation of Article 370 and the bifurcation of the erstwhile state into two Union Territories on August 5, 2019.(PTI)


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