After J&K delegation visit, EU calls for early assembly polls

20 February, 2021 | newsx bureau

On their 2-day visit to J&K, EU convoys met military and civil authorities, civil society representatives and some of the leaders elected in the recent DDC (District Development Council) elections.

The European Union envoys, on their third visit to J&K, praised certain measures taken by the Government of India after 5th August. EU studied the on-ground situation in the Union territory and now looks forward to an early organisation of the Legislative assembly elections. Ugo Austuto, EU’s ambassador to India, and several member states of EU were the part of the envoy who arrived in J&K to monitor the situation on February 17-18 after an invitation from Ministry of External Affairs.

Back in 2020, apart from revoking the special status of J&K under Article 370, the government also bifurcated the state into two union territories in August 2019. Many political parties in the region, including the People’s Democratic party and the National Conference, have been demanding conduct of assembly elections since then.

While addressing the media in Brussel on Friday, the EU spokesperson stated that they look forward to the assembly elections and other important steps that are to be taken in the economic and political sphere in J&K.

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”We have taken note of recent steps such as the election of District Development Councils and the resumption of 4G internet services. We look forward to a number of other important steps to be taken in the political and economic sphere, including the early organisation of the legislative Assembly elections,” the spokesperson said.

The EU spokesperson asserted that the Government of India has taken positive steps to restore normalcy in the region and the structures on communication and political leaders are a matter of concern. The EU, back in December 2019, issued an statement where they expressed concern over the fundamental freedom of people in J&K. ”While we understand the security concerns, it is important that the imposed restrictions be lifted in a swift manner”, The spokesperson added.

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