Thursday, September 29, 2022

Row over delimitation commission’s report for major changes in J&K constituencies

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The J&K Delimitation Commission has released a new interim report with its associate members, which would include three MPs of the Nation Conference and two BJP MPs, proposing redrawing of several assembly segments in Kashmir and one Lok Sabha seat, as well as the allocation of six seats to the Jammu division and one to the Kashmir division. The extensive report proposes redrawing the Anantnag Parliamentary seat to include Rajouri and Poonch from the Jammu area, as well as major revisions in the Kashmir division.

None of the comments made in response to the prior proposed plan, which was shared with associate members in December last year, have been incorporated into the new interim proposal, according to NC MPs.

Five of Srinagar’s eight Assembly seats would be redrawn, according to the Commission. The Habba Kadal Assembly sector, which had a large percentage of Kashmiri Pandit voters, has been divided into three seats under the draft rules. It has been also recommended to combine and create new constituencies on a large scale in north Kashmir and Budgam in central Kashmir.

Sangrama is going to be merged into other constituencies in north Kashmir, whereas Kunzer is likely to be a new Assembly constituency. Pulwama, Tral, and certain Shopian villages that were previously part of the Anantnag Lok Sabha seat will now be part of the Srinagar Parliamentary seat.

The Commission is expected to make the proposal, which adds six assembly seats to the Jammu division and one to the Kashmir division, public and invite citizen feedback and suggestions. There are additionally nine seats set up for schedule tribes and seven seats set aside for schedule castes.

Now, according to a spokeswoman for the Peoples Democratic Party, the entire delimitation effort is part of a larger scheme to undermine the people of J&K by dividing secular and majority votes. “It’s sad that the whole constitutional system was put into play to fulfil the BJP’s evil plan,” the PDP spokesperson remarked.

Meanwhile, Farooq Abdullah, the National Conference’s leader, criticized the new report, saying it “defies all logic” and that no political, social, or administrative justification can justify the proposals He went on to say that they had previously been informed that the delimitation operation was being carried out in order to make assembly seats contiguous with the district, but the draft is showing a completely different picture.

The number of assembly seats in Jammu and Kashmir would increase from 83 to 90 when the delimitation procedure is completed. Kashmir had 46 seats in the former assembly of Jammu and Kashmir, Jammu 37, and Ladakh four.

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