Panchayat Polls: Till 12 pm, Poonch, Bandipora record highest voter turnout in Jammu and Kashmir

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Srinagar: Bandipora district in Kashmir recorded the highest voter turnout of 40.3 per cent in Kashmir valley, while Poonch district in Jammu region recorded 67 percent till 12 pm during the ongoing third phase of panchayat polls on Saturday.

The voter turnout in other areas of the state include: Kupwara, 39.3; Bandipora, 40.3; Baramulla, 20.1; Ganderbal, 9.2; Budgam, 33.1; Kargil, 52.5; Leh, 48.1; Kishtwar, 51.1; Doda, 52.3; Ramban, 62.3; Udhampur, 60.3; Kathua, 62.5; Rajouri, 61 and Poonch of 67 percent.

According to officials, the polling began at 8 am in 2,773 polling stations, including 918 in Kashmir division and 1,855 in Jammu division, as per a PTI report.

The officials had said that 727 polling stations had been categorised as hypersensitive, including 493 in Kashmir division and 234 in Jammu division, for the third phase.

5,239 candidates were in the fray for 358 sarpanch and 1,652 panch seats. Ninety six sarpanchs and 1,437 panchs were elected unopposed in this phase.

The officials had said an electorate of 4,23,592 were eligible for voting for sarpanch constituencies while 2,70,668 for panch constituencies.

All arrangements, including security related, had been put in place for smooth conduct of the polls.

The nine-phased elections, being conducted on a non-party basis, began on November 17.

In the first phase of the polls, 74.1 per cent polling was recorded across J-K, including 64.5 per cent in Kashmir division and 79.4 per cent in Jammu division.

In the second phase held on November 20, overall 71.1 per cent polling was witnessed across the state with 80.4 per cent in Jammu division and 52.2 per cent in Kashmir division.

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