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J&K poll final phase today

TIGHT SECURITY: A motorcyclist undergoes an identity check in Srinagar on Tuesday, on the eve of the seventh and final phase of the Jammu and Kashmir Assembly elections.

TIGHT SECURITY: A motorcyclist undergoes an identity check in Srinagar on Tuesday, on the eve of the seventh and final phase of the Jammu and Kashmir Assembly elections.   | Photo Credit: - PHOTO: PTI/S. IRFAN

Shujaat Bukhari

SRINAGAR: Jammu and Kashmir is all set to witness the seventh and final phase of Assembly elections on Wednesday amid heavy security. Srinagar, Jammu and Samba go to the polls.

Amid a boycott and “Lal Chowk Chalo” call by separatists, the administration has deployed thousands of security personnel here. The residential areas have been sealed off.

As troopers descended on the streets, life came to a grinding halt. Shops, offices and business establishments remained closed. Private vehicles were allowed only after frisking and identity verification. Police said the measures were in place to foil violent incidents. “Separatists have given call for disruption and we are here to maintain law and order,” said an officer.

Though people largely perceived the restrictions as “curfew,” District Magistrate (Srinagar) Meraj Ahmad Kakroo told The Hindu that no curfew had been imposed and “Section 144 is being enforced strictly.”

As many as 393 candidates are contesting in 21 constituencies of Srinagar, Samba and Jammu districts.

Prominent candidates

Prominent among the candidates are the former Chief Minister, Farooq Abdullah, senior PDP leader Tariq Hamid Qarra, National Conference leader A.M. Sagar, the former Deputy Chief Minister, Mangat Ram Sharma, and the former Union Minister Chaman Lal Gupta.

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