Lok Sabha polls: 188 security personnel airlifted to snow-bound pockets in Kishtwar

JAMMU: A total of 188 security personnel were airlifted by three IAF helicopters to snow-bound Marwah and Warwan areas in Jammu and Kashmir’s Kishtwar district which is part of the Udhampur parliamentary seat, officials said.


Udhampur goes to polls in the first phase of the elections on April 19.


The officials said the airlifting of 144 Central Armed Police Force (CAPF) and 44 Jammu and Kashmir Police officers for deployment at 31 polling booths in the remote pockets marks the maiden airlift of men and materials in the country under the Lok Sabha elections.


In preparation for the first phase of the Lok Sabha elections, the significant deployment of security personnel has been executed in both the cut off remote regions of Kishtwar with joint efforts of the district election office, Kishtwar, and the Indian Air Force (IAF), they said.


The road connectivity to the Marwah and Warwan areas via Sinthan and Margamtop situated at an altitude of 12,500 feet further poses transportation challenges due to the snow clad areas.


Chief Electoral Officer, Jammu and Kashmir, P K Pole, has made special arrangements for the safe transportation of polling parties, election logistics and materials to 31 polling booths –19 in Marwah and 12 in Warwan.


The officials said this deployment is part of the comprehensive security measures being implemented across Kishtwar district in anticipation of the forthcoming elections.


The logistical challenges posed by the remote and snow-bound terrain of Marwah and Warwan were efficiently addressed, with 16 sorties transporting security personnel to these areas, they said.

District Election Officer Devansh Yadav said the meticulous planning involved in ensuring the safety and security of polling parties, particularly in the shadow zones and sensitive areas.

He said that five intermediate strong rooms have been established for the secure storage of ballots, enhancing the convenience and efficiency of the electoral process.

Yadav said 31 polling party members and reserves will be airlifted to far-flung polling stations situated in the interiors of Marwah and Warwan on Friday, reaffirming the administration’s commitment to ensure no voter is left behind while conducting free and fair elections.