Independents aplenty in J-K final phase

19 December 2008
The Hindustan Times

Jammu: The final phase of elections in Jammu and Kashmir on December 24 will have the distinction of having the highest number of Independents in state's electoral history. Of the total 370 candidates in the fray in 21 constituencies, 140 are Independents, election department officials said. Among the three districts of Jammu, Srinagar and Samba going to polls, Jammu's 11 segments account for 72 Independents followed by Srinagar with 58 Independents and 10 in Samba district. 'This is for the first time that such a large number of Independents are trying their luck in electoral battle field,' an election official said. The highest number of Independents are in Jammu's Akhnoor and Bishnah segments, where 14 each are in the fray out of 21 and 27 candidates respectively. In Jammu's Nagrota constituency, nine out of 25 candidates are Independents while seven are Independents out of 17 candidates in Gandhinagar, six out of 20 in Jammu East, eight out of 17 in Jammu West, two out of 14 in R S Pura, six out of 19 in Suchetgarh, three out of 15 in Marh, one out of 11 in Domana, and two out of seven in Chhamb segment. In Samba district, three are Independents out of 12 candidates in Samba constituency, followed by seven out of 19 candidates in Vijaypur segment.