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J&K ready for polls, assures police chief
Mukhtar Ahmad In Srinagar | November 15, 2008 23:33 IST
The Jammu and Kashmir [Images] government on Saturday said that election material and poll officials have been dispatched to the far-flung polling stations in the ten assembly constituencies, campaigning for which ended today evening.
The state government had to utilise helicopter sorties to airlift poll staff and material to Gurez, Nobra, Leh and Zanskar, following heavy snowfall on Friday.
Briefing newsmen, Director General of Police Kuldeep Khuda said that despite the heavy snowfall, polling staff, paramilitary forces and material including electronic voting machines have been dispatched to the 1,038 polling stations located in these constituencies.
"In Gurez constituency, 100 per cent poll staff would be in place by noon Sunday," Khuda said.
The police chief claimed that militancy in the state has come down by 40 percent this year. However, he added, "There have been some grenade attacks suggesting militants are not silent."
Khuda said that all the arrangements for holding free and fair polls have been made and "voters would be provided a suitable atmosphere for exercising their franchise, without any fear."
Speaking on the boycott call given by the separatist groups, he said, "There is nothing new in this and measures would be taken as per the situation."
The poll campaign for the first phase of Assembly elections ended peacefully today evening and the polling is scheduled for Monday.
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