CEC to hold meeting to discuss JK Assembly elections today

CEC to hold meeting to discuss JK Assembly elections today
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New Delhi, Mar 11: The Election Commission is set to hold a meeting on Tuesday to discuss the modalities of holding the Assembly elections in Jammu and Kashmir. The meetings would come just days after Chief Election Commissioner Sunil Arora announced that the Assembly elections would not be held simultaneously with the 2019 Lok Sabha elections.
Jammu and Kashmir is set to vote for its six Lok Sabha constituencies in five phases. Announcing the schedule for the 2019 Lok Sabha elections on Sunday, Arora had said the decision to hold the Lok Sabha and Assembly elections separately had been made on the basis of the prevailing security situation in the state.
However, Assembly elections will proceed in Andhra Pradesh, Arunachal Pradesh, Odisha and Sikkim.
Arora said the decision had been made in consultation with officials of the Jammu and Kashmir government as well as the Ministry of Home Affairs. He will hold the meeting on Tuesday in Jammu and Kashmir to decide on the scheduling and other specifics of holding the Assembly elections in the state.
The announcement has been questioned, with both the PDP and National Conference criticising the decision. “In a way I am disappointed for the state. Because it obviously means New Delhi does not want people of J&K to have their own elected government. They want to govern through handpicked nominee who has been taking political decisions,” former J&K CM and National Conference leader Omar Abdullah said.
“Everybody knows turnout in Assembly polls is higher than parliament elections. Had you done it simultaneously, the polls would have been at least successful. Now let us see how you are be able to convince the voters to go to the polling booths,” he said. The PDP too had strong words of criticism. “The visit of the EC seems to be just wastage of time, energy and resources. All the political parties had made it clear that they are ready for the elections,” said PDP spokesperson Firdous Tak.
Jammu and Kashmir has been without an elected government since June 2018, after the PDP-BJP combine led by Mehbooba Mufti broke up.