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Admitting that the recent incidents of killings at Tral contributed to lower voter turnout in South Kashmir, Chief Electoral Officer Thursday said that barring few minor incidents, the overall situation remained peaceful.

Addressing a press conference in Srinagar, CEO, Umang Nirula said all but 28 per cent polling was recorded in South Kashmir parliamentary constituency which went to polls on Thursday amid tight security. He however added that the percentage may slightly go up as all the figures have not been yet collected.

“These figures are tentative as we are yet to receive polling figures from several polling stations. But I can confirm 28 percent voting in South Kashmir as of now,” he said.

Flanked by Inspector General of Police Kashmir, Abdul Gani Mir, the CEO said, Nirula said that voting in four districts of South Kashmir was recorded as: Pulwama 6.32 percent, Shopian 20.43 percent, Kulgam 36.68 percent and Anantnag 37.76 percent.

According to CNS, comparing today’s figures with 2009 parliamentary polls, Chief Electoral Officer  said that this time the percentage was better in South Kashmir. He however said that in Pulwama district 10.49 percent votes were polled for fifth phase of Parliament elections.

When asked the reason about the low turnout, Chief Electoral Officer said that they will do an analysis and would try to find out what actually happened. Refusing to comment that lower turnout was due to the boycott call forwarded by separatist leaders, Umang Nirula said that the recent political killings certainly contributed to lower turnout.

On this occasion, IGP, Abdul Gani Mir assured the reporters that he would investigate the incident in which some scribes were allegedly beaten up by some policemen at Kulgam. He further said that government forces were deployed in large numbers in sensitive areas to ensure the safety and instill the confidence amoung common people.


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