Press Trust of india

Opposition members seek timeline for holding Assembly polls in J&K

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New Delhi: Opposition members in the Lok Sabha on Tuesday urged the government to hold assembly elections in Jammu and Kashmir at the earliest.

Participating in a debate on The Jammu and Kashmir Local Bodies Laws (Amendment) Bill, 2024, Hasnain Masoodi (NC) demanded that the polls in the union territory be held soon.

He said the central government should have decided on the polls before the Supreme Court had to intervene in the matter.

The top court had a few months back asked the Election Commission to hold assembly polls in Jammu and Kashmir by September this year.

Masoodi said Prime Minister Narendra Modi had on Monday said his government will take big decisions. Polls in the union territory should be held before other big ticket decisions are taken, Masoodi said.

Minister of State for Home Ajay Misra intervened to point out that local bodies’ elections were held in the erstwhile state.

Participating in the debate, TMC leader Saugata Roy also referred to the Supreme Court observation and pitched for early assembly polls in Jammu and Kashmir

On August 05, 2019, Jammu and Kashmir was made a union territory with a provision for a legislative assembly through abrogation of Article 370.

At present, the UT is under central rule.

Supriya Sule of the NCP demanded a timeline and “not a vague” answer from the government on holding assembly polls and giving statehood to the people of J&K.

She said while the Election Commission will decide on the date, the government could at least give a tentative timeline for holding the democratic exercise.

BJP member from Jammu Jugal Kishore Sharma said the Jammu and Kashmir Local Bodies Laws (Amendment) Bill would ensure justice to the other backward classes (OBCs) in the UT.

Chinta Anuradha (YSRCP) said this is a progressive legislation and would help streamline the election process in the local bodies, including panchayats.

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