A massive, 70% voter turnout was seen yesterday in the first phase of the J&K assembly elections. What does this mean?

What Does the 70% Voter Turnout in J&K Elections Mean?jk polls graphic MASSIVE VOTER TURNOUT IN J&K

  1. Yesterday saw the first phase of the elections for the Jammu & Kashmir state assembly. Voters turned up to cast their vote in very high numbers, with 70% of the electorate exercising their franchise.
  2. This high voter turnout was seen in spite of the very cold weather conditions – while voter turnout was low in the beginning because of the bitter cold, more and more voters flocked to polling booths as the day proceeded.
  3. jk polls2 MASSIVE VOTER TURNOUT IN J&K Voting was underway in some of the sensitive areas of north Kashmir such as Ganderbal, Sonawari, Kangan and Bandipore and many of the areas where far flung, mountainous districts. In the numbers that turned up to cast their vote; a significant proportion were first time voters and women. (Source-Rediff)
  4. What is also very heartening is the fact that the voting proceeded in a peaceful manner, without any untoward incident being reported. A poll official in Jammu was quoted as saying that no major incidents of violence have been reported. (Source – Times)
  5. The massive voter turnout was in spite of the call for boycott made by separatist outfits. A general strike as well as boycott of the polls was called for by the factions of Hurriyat Conference as well as the JKLF.
  6. This voter turnout was higher than that seen for the Lok Sabha polls this year which was just over 50% or the 65% turnout seen in the last J&K assembly polls. In the valley alone, an 11% jump in voter turnout was noted.
  7. jk polls MASSIVE VOTER TURNOUT IN J&K The high voter turnout in spite of the weather conditions and the separatist calls seems to send out a strong anti separatist message. People seem to be looking for proper governance and development. There is also the perception that this highest voter turnout since independence is possibly because of adequate security and awareness among voters. (Source – HT)
  8. It could just be that the people of the state are fed up with strife and want to enjoy the kind of development and peace that other parts of the country enjoy? Could there be a renewed positive perception of the armed forces and Indian authorities by association because of the swift, handson action taken during the recent floods that swept the state? The results of J&K assembly polls will be very interesting to watch.

Images courtesy – 1, 2 & 3

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