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Assembly polls in J&K after LS election: CEC Kumar
3/16/2024 11:02:17 PM

NEW DELHI, Mar 16:

The Assembly election in Jammu and Kashmir will be held after the Lok Sabha polls as organising both simultaneously is not viable from the security point of view, Chief Election Commissioner (CEC) Rajiv Kumar said on Saturday as he announced the schedule of the general election and some Assembly and bypolls.
The Lok Sabha polls will be held in seven phases beginning from April 19 and the results will be announced on June 4.
Asked why Assembly polls are not being held in Jammu and Kashmir along with the Lok Sabha election, the CEC said forces have to be provided to every candidate in the Union Territory, which is not possible at a time when elections are being held across the country.
He also said the Jammu and Kashmir Reorganisation Act was amended in December 2023 after a delimitation exercise and the clock had started ticking for the Election Commission (EC) since then.
“The Jammu and Kashmir Reorganisation Act was passed in 2019. There was a provision for 107 seats, 24 of which were in Pakistan-occupied Kashmir. Then the delimitation commission came and there was a change in the seats…. The reorganisation Act and delimitation were not in sync. That happened in December 2023. So our meter started running from December 2023,” Kumar said.
“All parties in Jammu and Kashmir said the Assembly election should be held with the parliamentary polls, but the entire administrative machinery said it cannot be done simultaneously. Every Assembly segment would have 10-12 candidates, which would mean more than 1,000 candidates. Every candidate has to be provided forces. It was not possible at this time,” the CEC added.
“But we stand committed that as soon as these elections are over, we will hold elections there,” he asserted.
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