Jammu: Over 6.30 lakh voters will decide the fate of 168 candidates, including 46 women, in the last phase of the district development council (DDC) elections in Jammu and Kashmir on Saturday (December 19), officials said.

Polling will also be held for the post of 285 panches and 84 sarpanches in the panchayat bypolls in 28 DCC constituencies on Saturday. Addressing a press conference here, State Election Commissioner (SEC) KK Sharma said 13 of the DCC constituencies fall in the Kashmir division while 15 are from Jammu with 168 candidates in the fray.

Sharma said in total 83 candidates, including 31 women, are contesting from the 13 constituencies of the Kashmir division.

In the Jammu division, there are 85 candidates, including 15 women, in the fray in the last phase of the DCC polls, he said. Sharma said they have set up 1,703 polling stations, where 6,30,443 people are eligible to vote.

As many as 1,028 polling stations fall in the Kashmir division while 675 in Jammu, he said.

He said 43 candidates have been elected unopposed against 165 posts of sarpanch in the final phase of the panchayat bypolls.

Similarly, he said against 1,457 seats of panch, 496 have been elected unopposed.

Referring to the COVID-19 pandemic, the SEC said adequate arrangements have been put in place to ensure the safety of all stakeholders, including voters. “Sanitisers, thermal scanners and face masks have been made available at polling stations,” he added.

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