- Police say two PTI workers were shot dead during polls in the limits of Naarr police station in Charhoi, Kotli
- Five police constables were also injured after activists attacked them with batons at the Dhal Chakhya polling station
(Karachi) Polling for Azad Jammu and Kashmir (AJK) elections ended amid deadly clashes while counting of votes is underway, local media reported on Sunday.
At least two activists of the Pakistan Tehreek-e-Insaf (PTI) were gunned down as clashes erupted with workers of the Pakistan Peoples Party (PPP) at a polling station in Azad Jammu and Kashmir's Kotli district. Election in the valley was held under strict security measures.
Police stated that the incident occurred in the limits of Naarr police station in Charhoi, Kotli. The victims have been identified as 40-year-old Zaheer Ahmed and 50-year-old Ramzan.
The police said that at around 9:15am, PPP and PTI workers clashed at the Mithi Jand polling station. When the situation worsened, shots were fired, resulting in the death of Zaheer Ahmed and Ramzan.
In a separate incident, a PTI worker suffered injuries after activists from an opponent party attacked him with sticks. The injured was shifted to a nearby medical facility.
Meanwhile, firing incidents were also reported in various polling stations in the LA-10 Kotli-3. The firing incidents were reported in the limits of polling stations numbers 91,92, 93, 94, 95 and 101. Some five police constables were also injured after activists of a religious party attacked them with batons at the Dhal Chakhya polling station in AJK's LA-32 constituency, Jhelum valley.
Earlier today, the polling started at 8am that continued till 5pm.
The Election Commission stated that 5,129 polling stations were established for 3.2 million registered voters. Of them, at least 826 polling stations were declared most sensitive while 1,209 as sensitive.
Over 40,000 security personnel were deployed to ensure peaceful voting.
A total of 724 candidates from 32 political and religious parties contested for 45 general seats with 33 in Kashmir valley and 12 seats allocated for Kashmiri refugees. There are eight reserved seats - five for women and one each for religious scholars, technocrats, and overseas Kashmiris. The members for these seats are nominated after the elections.
A close contest is expected between three main political parties, PTI, PML-N, and PPP. On seven seats, candidates from regional parties, Muslim Conference (MC), and Jammu Kashmir Peoples Party's (JK-PP), contested against major political parties.