“Delimitation delayed, Elections denied in J&K” 

Centre hell-bent to continue proxy rule in the erstwhile Dogra state: Harsh Dev

Ramnagar, 06-12-2021 Alleging subversion of democracy in J&K post Article 370 abrogation, Mr. Harsh Dev Singh, JKNPP Chairman and former Minister today said that BJP led govt appeared to be averse to the idea of holding Assembly elections in the new set up. He said that while no initiative had been taken to restore popular rule in J&K, the BJP govt seemed to be least bothered about holding time bound delimitation of Assembly constituencies in the UT created on August 5, 2019. While the saffron regime was creating a lot of Jangle and rattle over the issue of delimitation and increase of seats for Jammu, the fact remained that it failed to initiate any action in respect thereof except constitution of Delimitation Commission despite lapse of more than 28 months after the conversion of state into UTs, observed Singh. The delimitation commission appeared to have receded into the oblivion with hardly any reports about its activities with regard to J&K except holding one meeting with public representatives and political parties in June last year.

            Mr Singh said that while delimitation of DDC constituencies in J&K was effected within one week by the present dispensation in 2020 and elections held within months, the helmsmen had failed to come out with any convincing explanation for the inordinate delay in delimiting Assembly constituencies. He said that with delimitation delayed and denied, political process having been rendered defunct in J&K and political parties discredited and discouraged, the centre seemed to be hell bent to continue its proxy rule in the erstwhile Dogra state. He was addressing huge public meetings in Barmeen and Dhandhal villages of Ghordi block today.

Asserting that legitimate, elected govt alone could represent and honour the public sentiment, Mr. Singh questioned the rationale behind repeated postponement of Assembly Elections in J&K. He said that Election Commission had earlier taken a call for simultaneous polls of Assembly & Parliament in February 2019 when it held a series of meetings with various political parties over holding such elections which however did not materialize. It later issued a statement on 4th June, 2019 stating therein that “after the conduct of Amarnath Yatra the EC will announce the election schedule for the conduct of Assembly Elections in J&K”, revealed Singh adding that it too turned out to be a hoax. Likewise, statements of early Assembly polls were issued by central govt, erstwhile Governors and the Lt Governors also, which too created only cynicism amongst the masses in view of the frequency with which they were made and then forgotten. And now the repeated deferment of assembly elections under the garb of delimitation process was wholly unjustified as the said process was also being delayed at the behest of vested political interests, asserted Singh.

Asserting that general masses were fatigued with the bureaucratic rule, Mr. Singh called for an end to proxy rule in J&K and early restoration of democracy in the erstwhile state. The elected representatives alone could appreciate the concerns of the public as against the outside bureaucrats who hardly had any accountability to the people. The cosmetic ‘public hearing’ exercises by the Advisors and Secretaries conducted during the initial years followed by the sojourns of central Ministers had failed to inspire the masses who missed the much needed delivery on the ground”, observed Mr. Singh.

Re-iterating that a people’s govt alone could fulfill the aspirations of the general masses, Mr. Singh sought early Assembly elections in J&K so as to address the concerns of various aspirational groups of the erstwhile state