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Jammu and Kashmir Election Dates: State to Vote in 5 Phases, Exercise Begins on April 11

The National Conference, the Congress and other opposition parties slammed the decision to not hold assembly polls in the state.

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Updated:March 10, 2019, 9:29 PM IST
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Jammu and Kashmir Election Dates: State to Vote in 5 Phases, Exercise Begins on April 11
File photo of people voting in Jammu and Kashmir.
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New Delhi: The state of Jammu and Kashmir will see polling in five phases and the voting will take place on April 11, 18, 23 and 29. Voting in the last phase will take place on May 6.

The National Conference, the Congress and other opposition parties slammed the decision to not hold assembly polls in the state.

Lok Sabha elections will begin on April 11 and continue for over a month till May 19 across seven phases, followed by counting of votes on May 23, the Election Commission announced on Sunday.

The EC said the 'voter verifiable paper audit trail' (VVPAT) will be used in all polling stations this time

The state is now under President’s rule. Earlier, it was under Governor’s rule for six months after the alliance between the BJP and the People's Democratic Party fell apart in June last year.

The state recently witnessed the biggest terror strike on security forces in Pulwama when a suicide bomber rammed his explosives-laden car into a CRPF convoy and killed 40 jawans.

The events unfolding in and around the state — the issue of national security to be more precise — over the last one month have become the central plank in the BJP's campaign.

Given the unrelenting violence in form of regular encounters that the state has seen since July 2016 with the death of Hizbul Mujahideen militant Burhan Wani, protests against jailing of separatists, NIA raids, crackdown on Jamaat-e-Islami, the Pulwama attack, unrest over article 370 and 35A, the EC will have perhaps its toughest assignment in this state.

Getting people to come and out and vote will be a huge challenge for the EC given what happened in the last two Parliamentary bypolls that were scheduled in the state - Srinagar by-poll saw a voter turn out of 7% and Anantnag bypoll had to be cancelled. For the first time in nearly 3 decades the polls had to be cancelled due to poor response and bad law and order situation.

Here is the list of Lok Sabha constituencies in the state:

Phase 1 (April 11): Baramulla, Jammu
Phase 2 (April 18): Srinagar, Udhampur
Phase 3 (April 23): Anantnag*
Phase 4 (April 29): Anantnag*
Phase 5 (May 6): Ladakh and Anantnag*

*In a first, the Anantnag constituency in militancy-hit south Kashmir will witness three-phase polling
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