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Participatory democracy under threat in J&K: Dr Kamal

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Srinagar: The Jammu and Kashmir National Conference Additional General Secretary, Dr Sheikh Mustafa Kamal, on Friday said that the recent announcement by J&K’s Chief Election Officer on giving voting rights to non-locals has “made a mockery of participatory democracy” in J&K.

In a statement issued here, Kamal said, “It is against the very basis of local self-government. What is the fun of having a federal legislative Assembly, if unrelated people are able to influence the government?” 

“The move should not be seen in isolation, rather a part of the well-orchestrated plan to disenfranchise the people of J&K. It started with gerrymandering of legislative Assembly seats, which were carved out according to the wish list of the ruling party,” he said.

He further said that the all-party meeting convened by Dr Farooq Abdullah is a step in the right direction. “I hope all the political parties will positively respond to the call and attend the meeting to discuss the implications of the move and devise a common united strategy,” he said.

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