By: Afaq Bhat
Srinagar: As the Delimitation Commission is all set to submit its final report by this month end, political parties in Jammu and Kashmir have started to put their acts together to make their presence felt on the ground.
Leaders of the political parties have started meeting the workers and are telling them that they need to gear up as the assembly elections could be held anytime this year.
An analyst while talking to Precious Kashmir said, “This time there is no chance of any party staying away from the polls as the political parties have realized that boycotting elections is no solution and it would lead to these formations becoming irrelevant.”
The Delimitation Commission has proposed six new assembly constituencies in the Jammu region which would be carved out from Udhampur, Rajouri, Doda, Kathua, Samba and Kishtwar districts. This will increase the number of assembly seats from 37 to 43 in the Jammu region.
Similarly, one new seat has been proposed in Kashmir to be carved out from the existing Kupwara district, thus making the assembly seats to 47 from 46 in the Kashmir region.
According to the observers the redrawing of the assembly constituencies will bring Jammu region at par with Kashmir and any party can form the government. “Coming into power won’t be a cake walk for any political formation. These parties will heavily depend on each other. A single party getting a clear mandate looks difficult,” said an observer.
He said, “At present none of the political parties are attaching any preconditions like restoration of J&K’s statehood. The new government would be formed in a Union Territory with elected representatives having a defined role confined to governance only. The Lieutenant Governor will continue to hold the key as his decision will be final.”
“Even in power the politicians will have to abide by LG’s decision. Restoration of J&K’s statehood doesn’t look near. It can take time as the Centre hasn’t set any deadline for the same,” he added.
Many people believe that political parties will have to work hard to woo the voters as the political equations have changed after the abrogation of J&K’s special status. “All the leaders irrespective of their stature have to convince the people to vote for them. During the past two and half years many new narratives have come to fore and so have the new leaders. Traditional parties won’t find it easy to break the ice,” said a politician.