Srinagar, Dec 28: This year witnessed some major political developments in Jammu and Kashmir including the culmination of Delimitation exercise and revision of electoral roll in the Union Territory.
The major alliance forged by the key political parties here under the presidentship of National Conference (NC) president Dr Farooq Abdullah witnessed further cracks as one more ally, JKPM pulled out of PAGD, reducing the conglomerate to the group of few political parties.
Some major political developments including the culmination of much-awaited delimitation exercise conducted by the Delimitation Commission for Jammu and Kashmir led by Justice (Retd) Ranjana Prakash Desai alongside Chief Election Commissioner (CEC) Sushil Chandra, and Deputy Election Commissioner Chandra Bhushan concluded.
Delimitation is redrawing of the boundaries of an assembly or Lok Sabha constituency. The delimitation panel notified the new J&K assembly constituencies. 43 seats for Jammu division and 47 for Kashmir division have been demarcated by the panel while nine seats have been kept reserved for STs for the first time.
Moreover, the delimitation exercise was followed by the revised voter list in Jammu and Kashmir with the highest-ever net addition of more than 7.72 lakh voters, taking the total voters from 75,86,899 to 83,59,771 — 42,91,687 males, 40,67,900 females and 184 third gender.
Although the addition of new voters in the list witnessed hue and cry by the political parties, who termed it as a ploy to pave way for the easy win to the ruling BJP party in Jammu and Kashmir.
A record 11,40,768 claims were received through Form-6 for inclusion of names in the electoral roll, of which 11,28,672 were accepted. The claims so accepted included 3,01,961 those of first-time voters, the government had said.
A total of 4,12,517 requests for deletion from the electoral roll were received, 3,58,222 of which were accepted. The claims and objections were accepted from September 15 to October 25, followed by a 15-day period till November 10 for their disposal.
Amid these developments, there appears no signs of the long overdue assembly elections in J&K.
The year also saw former chief minister as well as the Leader of Opposition in Rajya Sabha, Ghulam Nabi Azad ending his 50-year-long association with Congress and launching his own party.
Although the name has been already objected to by the Elections Commission, the party has reportedly sent a few more names to the EC for approval. However, the final name has not been selected yet.
In the initial months of its formation, the party led by Azad has seemingly witnessed fissures within as some of the leaders have been expelled for anti-party activities. The leaders, who have been expelled, claimed that DAP is almost non-existent and only a few people are calling shots in it.
Tara Chand, former Deputy Chief Minister of J&K, alleged that Azad-led DAP is only dividing the secular vote.