Dozen hurt in poll clashes amid heavy voting in Jammu region (Lead)

November 23rd, 2008 - 4:19 pm ICT by IANS  

Jammu, Nov 23 (IANS) A dozen people sustained injuries Sunday when clashes broke out between supporters of various political parties and independent candidates at 10 polling stations in the Jammu region, where voters turned up in large numbers for the second phase of assembly elections in Jammu and Kashmir.Polling was disrupted after the clashes at 10 polling stations in Darhal, Rajouri and Kalakot constituencies in the region’s Rajouri district following clashes between supporters of various political parties and independent candidates.

The police had to open fire to disperse stone-pelting groups of supporters of the National Conference (NC) and other parties at the Badadarhal polling station in the Darhal constituency. District election authorities said order had been restored and balloting had begun at the polling stations.

Officials said they might have to extend the balloting time to accommodate the heavy turnout of voters to ensure everyone gets the chance to exercise his franchise.

Four constituencies, Darhal, Rajouri, Kalakote and Nowshera in Rajouri district went to the polls Sunday morning with as many as 59 candidates in the fray. Two other constituencies in Jammu and Kashmir where balloting started are Ganderbal and Kangan in the Kashmir Valley.

Elections for the 87-member state assembly are being held in seven phases.

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