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Saturday 30 August 2014

Violence again hits India election

Published 07/05/2014 | 12:37

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An Indian woman casts her vote during the eighth phase of voting in the Indian parliamentary elections, in Dharmsala, Himachal Pradesh state (AP)
A Hindu holy man displays the ink mark on his finger after casting his vote, in Haridwar, India (AP)
Indian Hindu holy men wait to cast their votes, in Haridwar (AP)

Violence has flared in Indian-controlled Kashmir as millions of people vote on the penultimate day of national elections.

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An explosion in a polling booth injured a paramilitary soldier, and three other troops were wounded overnight when suspected militants fired at them, according to Kishore Prasad, spokesman of the paramilitary Central Reserve Police Force.

No voters were injured. The previous two polling days in the region were also marred by violence.

The state election commission said about 20% of registered voters had cast their ballots by late afternoon today.

Indian Kashmir elects only six members of the 543-member lower house of India's parliament, but voting there is staggered over several days due to security concerns.

With 814 million eligible voters, India is voting in phases over six weeks. People in seven states, including parts of the politically crucial states of Uttar Pradesh and Bihar, vote today.

One of the key constituencies is Amethi in Uttar Pradesh, where Rahul Gandhi - the son of ruling Congress party president Sonia Gandhi and the party's presumed prime ministerial candidate - is running.

The final day of voting is Monday. Results are to be announced May 16.

Press Association

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