High voter turnout marks peaceful Kashmir panchayat polls

Heavy voter turnout marked an incident-free first phase of panchayat elections in Jammu and Kashmir.

Last Updated: Apr 13, 2011, 19:09 PM IST

Srinagar: Heavy voter turnout marked an incident-free first phase of panchayat elections in Jammu and Kashmir on Wednesday.

In the Kashmir Valley, preliminary trends indicated 77 percent voter turnout in Kangan, 86 percent in Kupwara, 75 percent in Badgam and 70 percent in Qaimoh blocks where polling began at 8 am.
Despite the boycott call given by hardline senior separatist leader Syed Ali Geelani, people in large numbers came out to choose their representatives.

"The voting has been peaceful and incident-free in all the four blocks which went to polls in the first phase of the panchayat elections here," an official said.
The polls are being held after the state assembly elections of 2008 in which over 62 percent polling was recorded despite separatists` boycott call.
The last panchayat elections were held in the state in 2001.

IANS