The BJP government has ‘consciously disenfranchised’ the people in Jammu and Kashmir (J&K) by not holding the Assembly elections on time, says Omar Abdullah, the vice-president of National Conference (NC).
Abdullah said the right to choose an elected government, as opposed to being governed by a handpicked nominee of the central government, is the hallmark of the sort of democracy that the Prime Minister Narendra Modi is tweeting about. The NC leader referred to the PM’s appeal to help increase voter turnout in the general election. He said the people of J&K should be given an opportunity to exercise their democratic right.
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However, the National Conference declined to meet the Election Commission delegation today, saying that the party has nothing more to add to its demand of simultaneous Lok Sabha and assembly polls in J&K. The party’s spokesman said NC has made its stance clear. “Our demand of having simultaneous assembly and Lok Sabha elections in the state at our earlier meetings with the EC team remains as it is. We have nothing more to add,” he said.
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The EC’s three special observers are in Srinagar, Kashmir for a two-day visit to assess the ground situation for holding the assembly polls. They will be interacting with representatives of various political parties and district election officers.
Last week, the Election Commission of India released the dates and phase for the Lok Sabha elections but not the J&K state assembly polls. The state assembly had been dissolved in June last year following fallout between the PDP and BJP alliance.