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Opposition leaders meet EC, seek early elections in J&K

Opposition leaders meet EC, seek early elections in J&K

Farooq Abdullah, J&K ex-Chief Minister



Tribune News Service

New Delhi, March 16

A delegation of Opposition leaders, led by former Jammu and Kashmir Chief Minister Farooq Abdullah, today met the Election Commission (EC) and submitted a memorandum, seeking early Assembly elections in the Union Territory.

After having met Chief Election Commissioner (CEC) Rajiv Kumar here, Abdullah told the media that Jammu and Kashmir had been without a legislative Assembly and an elected government for the past five years.

“The CEC has assured us that the EC will soon hold a meeting to discuss the matter,” he said.

The delegation informed the CEC and other members of the EC that the Centre had been making claims of restoring normalcy in J&K and that the onus was now on the Election Commission.

The National Conference leader said: “The delegation posed a genuine question: why isn’t the commission taking note of the plight of the people of Jammu and Kashmir?”

In August 2019, the Central Government had abrogated Article 370, which granted special status to J&K, and reorganised the erstwhile state into UTs of Jammu and Kashmir and Ladakh.

In a memorandum submitted to the poll panel, the leaders said, “In disregard to the letter and spirit of the Constitution, an unrepresentative and unaccountable bureaucracy is allowed to run the government to the discomfort and inconvenience of the general public.”

Signed by NCP leader Sharad Pawar, Congress president Mallikarjun Kharge, CPM general secretary Sitaram Yechury, AAP leader Sanjay Singh and others, the memorandum stated the EC was under the constitutional obligation to hold the Assembly elections in Jammu and Kashmir anytime soon.

Panel to hold meeting

The Chief Election Commissioner has assured the Opposition that the EC will soon hold a meeting to discuss the matter. — Farooq Abdullah, J&K ex-chief minister

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