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news details
Inclement weather, rain spells dampen spirits
4/19/2024 11:20:58 PM

Early Times Report

Jammu, Apr 19: Inclement weather with intermittent spells of rain marked the first phase of polling on Udhampur parliamentary constituency during the first phase of Lok Sabha elections of 2024.
From Kathua to Marwah and Ramnagar to Banihal, rain lashed the entire region which somehow kept people away from the polling stations. Since morning it started raining in Kathua and Udhampur districts followed by Chenab valley and people kept waiting for the clouds to disappear and give a breathing space to voters to reach polling stations.
Though it was somehow easy to reach polling stations in plains of Kathua district like Kathua town, Hiranagar and few areas of Billawar but people in hilly areas of Bani and Basholi faced lots of hardships to reach polling stations to cast their votes. In Udhampur the story was same and rain kept people on tenterhooks and many stayed indoors and didn’t vote at all.
In Chenab valley, rain had a huge impact on polling in first half of the day when voters in Banihal and Bhaderwah areas couldn’t move out due to heavy rain and low temperatures. But in the afternoon, rain kept away and people got a breathing period to come out and vote to elect their Member Parliament (MP).
As the evening progressed and voting got closed at 6 pm, heavy downpour started again and it continued till late evening.
The worst sufferers of the intermittent heavy rain in the evening were the polling staff and security forces accompanying them in hilly areas where they had to walk five to seven kilometers in slippery conditions and reach back to base camps from where they had collected the election material.
Moreover, the threat of landslides and shooting stones on Nashri to Banihal stretch of Jammu-Srinagar national highway, which falls in Ramban district, hampered the polling parties to reach back to their base camps. The threat of landslides also loomed large in hilly and far off areas of Udhampur, Kathua, Doda and Kishtwar districts and administration was keeping a close eye on the developments.
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