The process of 'home voting' on Monday commenced in the Udhampur Lok Sabha constituency for elderly citizens and persons with disabilities, with a remarkable 92 per cent turnout on the first day, officials said.

Elderly and differently-abled persons exercised their franchise through postal ballots from their homes in different places of Kathua, Udhampur, Ramban, Doda, and Kishtwar districts, all part of the Udhampur Lok Sabha constituency, which is scheduled for polling in the first phase on April 19.

"Out of 621 eligible electors, 92 per cent cast their votes under these categories in the Udhampur Lok Sabha constituency," Rakesh Minhas , the Returning Officer for the Udhampur parliamentary constituency, told PTI on Monday evening.

This initiative allows voters aged above 85 years and differently-abled persons meeting the 40 per cent disability criteria to avail of the optional home voting facility, the officials said.

Electors under this category have begun exercising their voting rights, they said.

In the Udhampur district, 124 postal ballot votes were received, of which 116 were polled, informed District Election Officer (DEO) Saloni Rai.

Additionally, 5 votes were cast in the district jail at Udhampur, she added.

Highlighting the Election Commission's (EC) introduction of home voting facility for the first time for a Lok Sabha election, the DEO stated, "This initiative aims to facilitate voting for elderly citizens and PwDs at their homes with polling teams reaching their doorsteps to enable them to cast votes for the 2024 Lok Sabha elections."

The optional facility underscores the EC's commitment to ensuring that citizens' right to vote is not impeded by physical barriers or disabilities, upholding the commission's motto of ensuring that 'no voter is left behind', the officials said.

The process involves a dedicated team of polling officials, accompanied by security personnel, visiting the voter's residence to collect their votes. The entire exercise is being recorded on video for transparency, they said.