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DGP, GoC review security situation of Poonch ahead of polling

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Poonch: DGP RR Swain and General Officer Commanding (GOC) White Knight Corps Lt Gen Navin Sachdeva on Wednesday reviewed operational preparedness and security situation of border district Poonch ahead of polling in Anantnag-Rajouri Lok Sabha constituency on May 25.
A high-level joint security review meeting chaired by the Director General of Police Was conducted on Wednesday in Poonch, officials said.
The GOC 16 Corps and the DGP emphasized the importance of maintaining a high level of vigilance and preparedness to effectively address any potential security challenges. The ADGPs and Formation Commanders provided valuable insights and updates on the current security situation and outlined strategic measures to bolster security protocols.
The Joint Security Review Meeting underscored the commitment of the security forces to maintaining peace and stability in the region, ensuring the safety and security of all citizens. They reiterated their resolve to work in unison and adapt to evolving security dynamics.
The meeting reaffirmed the collective commitment to safeguard the region and a pledge to continue collaborative efforts for enhanced security.
Poonch, which is part of the Anantnag-Rajouri Lok Sabha constituency, is going to polls in the sixth phase of elections on May 25. The region has witnessed dozens of high profile terror attacks, particularly against the armed forces in the past two years. During the meeting, comprehensive discussions were held to synergise ongoing operations and review preparations in anticipation of forthcoming events, they said. The focus was on enhancing coordination and ensuring robust security measures across the region, they said.

Focus shifts to Anantnag-Rajouri, last J&K LS constituency to go to polls

Anantnag: Polling in four of the five parliamentary seats in Jammu and Kashmir having ended peacefully, the focus has now shifted to the reshaped Anantnag-Rajouri constituency which witnessed four terror attacks in the last 30 days.
The constituency spread on either side of the mighty Pir Panjal was originally scheduled to go to polls on May 7 but it was deferred to May 25 due to adverse weather conditions on the request of several parties, including the BJP, Apni party and the DPAP.
The parties also cited the closure of the Mughal road – an alternative link connecting Jammu with Kashmir.
Over 18.30 lakh eligible voters, including 8.99 lakh women and over 81,000 first-timers, will decide the fate of 20 contestants, including former chief minister and PDP president Mehbooba Mufti, in the fray for the prestigious seat. The Anantnag-Rajouri constituency was reshaped on the recommendations of the Delimitation Commission in 2022, excluding Pulwama and some segments of Shopian and bringing in most of Rajouri and Poonch districts.
Mehbooba faces a tough challenge from National Conference candidate and influential Gujjar leader Mian Altaf and the Apni Party’s Zafar Iqbal Khan Manhas, who has the BJP’s backing.
Democratic Progressive Azad Party (DPAP) leader Mohamad Saleem Parray and 10 Independents are also in the fray.
The campaigning has now gathered steam especially after the Srinagar and Baramulla Lok Sabha seats witnessed record-breaking turnout on May 13 and 20, respectively, as voters put behind separatist-sponsored boycott calls of the past.
While the Srinagar constituency recorded nearly 38 per cent polling — its second-highest in the past three decades — Baramulla registered its all-time high voter turnout of 58.17 per cent.
Spread across 18 assembly segments – seven in Anantnag district, four in Rajouri, three each in Kulgam and Poonch and one in Shopian – the Anantnag-Rajouri constituency is witnessing a high-pitched campaign with leaders such as National Conference president Farooq Abdullah, his son Omar, Mehbooba Mufti, DPAP chairman Ghulam Nabi Azad and Apni Party president Altaf Bukhari making all-out efforts to garner support.
Officials said there has been just one untoward incident so far that happened during an election rally of the National Conference in which three of its workers suffered injuries in a knife attack in the Mendhar area of Poonch on Sunday.
They said a total of 2,338 polling stations, 2,113 in rural areas and 225 in urban areas, are being set up across the constituency. Campaigning is scheduled to end Thursday evening.
Multi-layered security arrangements have been put in place in the poll-bound districts, the officials said, expressing confidence that the trend of record-breaking voting set by central and north Kashmir will continue in south Kashmir as well.

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