Militants Target Mufti Seat, 9 Hurt
13 October 2004
The Indian Express
Jammu: As militants tried to disrupt polling in Jammu and Kashmir, an estimated 38 per cent voters exercised their franchise in bypolls to the four Assembly seats. Nine persons were injured in explosions triggered by militants in Chief Minister Mufti Mohammed Sayeed's constituency, Pahalgam. The highest - 90.6 per cent - polling was recorded at Basohli, followed by Akhnoor. Polling was by and large peaceful in both these constituencies. However, at few places, workers of the opposition parties alleged that their polling agents were not allowed to sit in the booths. In Basohli, two BJP workers alleged that they were thrashed by Congress workers, who were travelling in a Tata Sumo. While Akhnoor and Basholi are in the Jammu region, the other two constituencies are in Kashmir. In Pahalgam, from where Sayeed is seeking election to the Assembly after 17 years, militants blew up a bus carrying polling staff and security personnel injuring nine at Frislan. The injured were four polling staff, three CRPF jawans, a policeman and the driver, official sources said. The constituency recorded a turnout of only 18.66 per cent. Militants, who had called for a poll boycott, also fired two rifle grenades at Katsoo and Saller polling stations but there was no damage.