Technical reasons may delay Assembly polls in J&K

Technical reasons may delay Assembly polls in J&K

SRINAGAR: While regional parties like the National Conference and PDP are waiting for early elections in Jammu and Kashmir, it seems unlikely that they would be held by the end of the current year. There are many technical reasons for the delay. First, the Union government was waiting for the delimitation commission to complete its exercise regarding the parliamentary and Assembly segments in Jammu and Kashmir.
Now, they are waiting for the revision of electoral rolls in Jammu and Kashmir, as it may take more time which can bring the authorities to take a decision, along with the Election Commission, whether to hold Assembly elections during the severe winter months in Kashmir.

There is no elected government in Jammu and Kashmir since BJP pulled the rug under the feet of then Chief Minister Mehbooba Mufti in summer of 2018. After brief central rule, the BJP government at the Centre abrogated Article 370 and reduced the erstwhile state of Jammu and Kashmir into two Union Territories of Ladakh and J&K. In the UT of Jammu and Kashmir, there is a legislature, while as UT of Ladakh is without a legislature to be ruled directly by the Centre. It seems that in Jammu and Kashmir, Assembly elections will have to wait for the winter months to pass, which means they can be held in April-May of 2023.
Earlier, Union Home Minister Amit Shah had promised that the Central government was keen to have an elected government in Jammu and Kashmir and assured that statehood would be restored only after the elections. Most of the regional parties, including JKPCC, have been pleading for the restoration of statehood first before holding the polls in Jammu and Kashmir.
However, Union Defence Minister Rajnath Singh, in his latest media interaction, indicated that the election process could be started in Jammu and Kashmir by the end of this year. Replying to a written request about the possibility of holding polls in Jammu and Kashmir in the current session of Parliament, the government said in Rajya Sabha, “The government constituted a Delimitation Commission, which notified orders on 14 March 2022 and 5 May 2022, on delimitation of Parliamentary and Assembly constituencies of Jammu and Kashmir. Thereafter, the Election Commission has initiated revision of electoral rolls.” The Union government has been repeatedly saying that the decision to hold elections in Jammu and Kashmir is the prerogative of the Election Commission and not of the Union Home Ministry. It is in place to mention that the Election Commission has given a timeline of 31 October for the publication of electoral rolls which would be revised by the officials.

Sunday Guardian

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published.