At a polling station at Government Middle School Qamarwari here voters were waiting for their turn to exercise franchise from early morning. Traditionally the area used to side with boycott, this time the mood was different.
It was not the political party rivalry being discussed by the voters; rather they talked about issues ranging from power crisis to drinking water shortage
“Traditionally, I used to vote for my party candidate. But now, time demands unity,” said aged Ali Muhammad Dar after casting his vote.
“There is a need to give impetus to the development, protect our cultural identity, jobs and land for our future generation. For the last few years, business has ebbed to the bottom; look at our health infrastructure, COVID has exposed it. Therefore, there is need to have qualified representatives who could work at grassroots,” Dar said.
A few kilometers from Qamarwari polling station, the voters in Shalteng on Srinagar outskirts were discussing as to how their votes could help them to have roads, water and power in their area.
The development continues to be the main poll plank in these elections. Yet, this time the need to protect cultural identity, land, jobs were also “catchwords” among the voters who spoke to this correspondent.
The number of voters in areas of Srinagar where elections were held was slightly higher than the previous elections, despite the COVID scare and cold weather.
“We are fully aware that this election is not about leadership, it is to select a right candidate who could articulate our grievances and redress them in a better way.
“We have a lingering issue of road widening which is pending for over a decade at Qamarwari as a result of which the whole populace suffer. We are hopeful that the candidate whom we have voted will resolve it soon,” said Muhammad AyoubAkhoon of Shalteng.