EC takes exception to J&K LG's remark on poll schedule, says refrain from 'interfering' in constitutional duties

The statement came after media reports quoted GC Murmu as saying that polls in the UT can be held after the delimitation exercise which is underway

Press Trust of India July 28, 2020 21:57:07 IST
EC takes exception to J&K LG's remark on poll schedule, says refrain from 'interfering' in constitutional duties

Srinagar: The Election Commission on Tuesday took "exception" to the reported remarks of Jammu and Kashmir Lt Governor GC Murmu on timing of polls in the Union Territory, and said in the Constitutional scheme of things, only the EC is authorised to decide on the poll schedule.

Taking note of a media report which quoted Murmu on the delimitation exercise in Jammu and Kashmir and holding of polls, the EC in a statement said it "takes exception to such statements and would like to state that in the Constitutional scheme of things, the timings etc. of elections is the sole remit of Election Commission of India."

The Commission also referred to similar statements of the LG reported by various media outlets in November last year and June this year.

"It would be proper for authorities other than the Election Commission to refrain from making such statements which virtually tantamount to interfering with the Constitutional mandate of the Commission," the statement said.

The poll panel said before deciding the timing, it takes into consideration all the relevant factors, including topography, weather, sensitivities arising out of regional and local festivities in the areas where the election is to take place.

"For example, in the current times, Covid-19 has introduced a new dynamic, which has to be, and shall be taken into consideration at the due time. In the instant case, the outcome of delimitation is also germane to the decision," the statement said.

Availability of central forces and railway coaches for their transportation are important factors, it pointed out.

"All this is done after meticulous homework by the senior officials of the Commission and a detailed assessment in due consultation with concerned authorities," it said.

The Commission itself schedules a visit to the concerned state wherever required and holds extensive consultations with all the stakeholders, the statement noted.

The union territory of Jammu and Kashmir came into being on 31 October, 2019 after the state was reorganised and bifurcated into two union territories, Ladakh being the other.

There is a provision of a state legislature in the union territory of J&K.

A Delimitation Commission set up by the government earlier this year has started the exercise of redrawing the assembly and parliamentary seats in Jammu and Kashmir and some northeastern states.

Delimitation is the process of fixing limits or boundaries of assembly and parliamentary constituencies in the country.

According to the section 60 of the J&K Reorganisation Act, "...the number of seats in the Legislative Assembly of Union territory of J&K shall be increased from 107 to 114...."

Out of these, 24 seats are in Pakistan-occupied-Kashmir. So effectively, the seats will go up from 83 to 90, Chief Election Commissioner Sunil Arora had explained recently while responding to queries on the delimitation process in Jammu and Kashmir.

Updated Date:

Find latest and upcoming tech gadgets online on Tech2 Gadgets. Get technology news, gadgets reviews & ratings. Popular gadgets including laptop, tablet and mobile specifications, features, prices, comparison.

also read

Behind Pakistan’s cartographic hallucination on Kashmir lies Imran’s domestic woes, China’s invisible hand
India

Behind Pakistan’s cartographic hallucination on Kashmir lies Imran’s domestic woes, China’s invisible hand

China has never been a disinterested party in Kashmir, and its interventions are getting more frequent in tune with Beijing’s hold over its client state Pakistan.

Saifuddin Soz to sue J&K administration over 'unlawful house arrest'; Rahul Gandhi seeks his release
India

Saifuddin Soz to sue J&K administration over 'unlawful house arrest'; Rahul Gandhi seeks his release

Soz has alleged that he has been detained in his house since 5 August, 2019, when the Centre abrogated Article 370. However, the UT administration denied the charge in the SC on Wednesday

Manoj Sinha takes oath as Jammu and Kashmir's L-G; career politico succeeds ex-IAS GC Murmu
India

Manoj Sinha takes oath as Jammu and Kashmir's L-G; career politico succeeds ex-IAS GC Murmu

Sinha succeeds former IAS officer Girish Chandra Murmu, who resigned on Wednesday night and was appointed Comptroller and Auditor General (CAG) on Thursday