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Anantnag bypolls postponed to 25 May: Election Commission

LiveMint logoLiveMint 10-04-2017 Shahswati Das

New Delhi: The Election Commission (EC) on Monday postponed the Anantnag Lok Sabha bypolls to 25 May.

“A report has been received from the state administration of Jammu and Kashmir on 10 April that law and order situation prevailing in Anantnag parliamentary constituency is not conducive to holding of free and fair poll in the constituency on 12 April,” the notification issued by the EC said.

It added that there were apprehensions that there may be ‘violent attempts by some miscreant elements to thwart the polling process’ particularly in the view of the violent incidents and loss of life that took place in the Srinagar bypolls on Sunday. The EC is hopeful that with a delay of more than a month it will make the situation more conducive to hold polls.

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Two days before the Anantnag Lok Sabha constituency was to go to polls on Wednesday, unidentified people torched two schools in Shopian and Pulwama districts in south Kashmir.

“The two schools had been designated as polling stations and they suffered partial damage because of the fire,” said a senior Jammu and Kashmir police official, requesting anonymity.

Anantnag constituency which is spread over four districts of Kulgam, Pulwama, Shopian and Anantnag, was scheduled to go to polls on 12 April.

However, given the extent of tension in Kashmir during the by-polls in Srinagar, the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) candidate from Anantnag, Tasaduq Mufti, on Monday appealed to the Election Commission to postpone the election.

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