The campaigning for prestigious Srinagar Lok Sabha seat here, going to the polls on April 18 in the second phase of elections, came to an end Tuesday.
Srinagar Lok Sabha seat comprises three districts of Jammu and Kashmir — Srinagar, Budgam and Ganderbal. It was relatively a low key campaign here with only National Conference president Farooq Abdullah, who is seeking a fourth term in the lower house of Parliament from here, making his presence felt as a candidate.
Abdullah is pitched against political greenhorns Aga Moshin of the PDP, Irfan Ansari of the People’s Conference and Khalid Jehangir of the BJP.
An election official said there were only 46 rallies in Srinagar district, a city of over 12 lakh residents, during the campaign period. “The campaign period remained by and large peaceful,” he added.
He said 16 complaints of the violation of model code of conduct were received and the action was taken in nine of them.
The polling on Thursday will be keenly watched within and outside Kashmir as the constituency recorded an all-time low of 7.2 per cent voter turn out in 2017 bye-election, marred by violence on polling day that left nine persons dead and scores of others injured.
This will be first major election since a shawl weaver Farooq Ahmad Dar from Utlipora in Budgam district was used as a human shield by an army officer to save his men from stone-pelting protersters on the election day.
Stringent security measures have been put in place for the polling as additional security personnel have been deployed across the Srinagar constituency to ensure peaceful and smooth conduct of elections, the official said.
As many as 12,90,318 voters are eligible to cast their votes with authorities having set up 1,716 polling stations in the constituency.
For migrant voters of the constituency, 26 polling stations have been set up with 21 in Jammu, one in Udhampur and four in New Delhi.
Farooq Abdullah is among 10 candidates in the fray and is seen as the front runner to enter the Lok Sabha for the fourth time from Srinagar Lok Sabha constituency.