SRI NAGAR: In the first three phases of elections, the voter turnout in strife-torn Kashmir Valley saw a considerable drop from 2014, with 30 of the 36 Assembly segments in the three parliamentary constituencies that went to polls — Srinagar, Baramulla and parts of Anantnag — recording poor polling percentage. The Srinagar Lok Sabha seat, spread over central Kashmir districts of Srinagar, Budgam and Ganderbal and comprising 15 Assembly segments, went to polls on April 18 and saw a dismal 14.1% turnout, way below 25.85% recorded in 2014.
Only two Assembly segments in Srinagar, Zadibal and Habba Kadal, witnessed a marginal improvement in voting but even then the polling percentage remained in single digit — 8.3% in Zadibal and 4.3% in Habba Kada. Baramulla constituency spread over three districts of Baramulla, Kupwara and Bandipora and comprising 15 Assembly segments, polled on April 11.
The seat recorded 34.71% polling as against 39.14% in 2014. While 11 Assembly segments witnessed a considerable drop in polling, four — Sopore, Gulmarg, Pattan and Bandipora — witnessed a marginal increase. The Anantnag district of Anantnag Lok Sabha seat in south Kashmir went to polls on April 23 while three other districts — Pulwama, Shopian and Kulgam — will see voting on April 29 and May 6.
All the six Assembly segments of the district recorded drops in turnout. The poor turnout in Anantnag spells trouble for PDP chief and former chief minister Mehbooba Mufti, who is locked in a triangular contest with state Congress chief Ghulam Ahmed Mir and Justice (Retired) Hasnain Masoodi of National Conference.