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news details
Governor announces rural, civic elections
8/16/2018 10:44:21 PM
Early Times Report
Srinagar, Aug 16: In his Independence Day address on Wednesday, Jammu and Kashmir Governor N N Vohra announced that polls to the state's urban local bodies and panchayats will be held September onwards. Speaking at Srinagar's Sher-e-Kashmir Cricket Stadium, the venue for the Independence Day parade, Vohra said, "The prolonged delay in establishing democratically-elected self-governing bodies at the grassroot level in urban and rural areas has resulted in the loss of considerable funds which would have been available if elections had been held."
He said elections to urban local bodies will take place during September-October and the phased Panchayat polls between October and December this year. "We are also taking action to ensure that adequate funds, delegation of administrative and financial authority, deployment of the required staff and necessary logistical support is provided to the municipalities and panchayats as soon as they get established."
While announcing the panchayat polls, which have not been held in the state since 2011, the Governor appealed to leaders of all political parties to support the administration "to improve efficiency and accountability in every arena of functioning and to lend their valuable support towards engendering an environment in which the forthcoming elections to Municipalities and Panchayats produce a positive outcome".
Speaking on the current situation in Kashmir, Vohra said the "recurring unrest" has seriously affected academic schedules and the future of the youth. "It is extremely important that the anger of our youth, from whatever reasons it may arise, must not lead to their getting involved in violent activities," he said.
The Governor added that it was "gratifying" that a number of youth who "were influenced to pick up the gun" have since returned to their families. Vohra commended security forces for carrying out effective operations and neutralising "perhaps the largest ever number of terrorists in the past many years".
Speaking on the recently concluded elections in Pakistan, he said, "I very much hope that the new leadership in Islamabad will recognise the futility of continuing with its terrorist agenda in J&K and accept that peace between our two countries will contribute towards the establishment of fruitful relations, growing trade, prosperity and all around mutual benefits."
In July this year, while addressing National Conference's provincial meeting, party vice-president Omar Abdullah had said the atmosphere in the state is not conducive for elections. "If the governor feels that panchayat elections have to conducted at this time, I would advise, that he watch every step," he said.
The PDP, however, has been on board for holding panchayat elections. The state has been under Governor's rule since the BJP pulled out of the ruling alliance with the PDP.
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