Centre notifies Delimitation Comm recommendations

Revision of Electoral Rolls, rationalization of Polling Stns next

Excelsior Correspondent

JAMMU, May 20: Paving the way for rationalization of Polling Stations and revision of Electoral Rolls in Jammu and Kashmir, the Central Government today said the orders of the Delimitation Commission will come into effect from today (May 20).
In a gazette notification, the Union Law Ministry said the Panel’s two orders — one of March 14 dealing with the number of constituencies reserved for various categories and the second of May 5 related with the size of each constituency — will come into effect together from May 20.
With the recommendations having been accepted by the Centre, decks are now cleared for holding of the first Assembly elections in Jammu and Kashmir after it was converted into a Union Territory on August 5, 2019.
Official sources told the Excelsior that after gazette notification by the Union Law Ministry for delimitation of 90 Assembly constituencies in Jammu and Kashmir, the Election Commission of India has to go for rationalization of Polling Stations and revision of Electoral Rolls, which hasn’t taken place since 2019.
While revision of Electoral Rolls didn’t take place in 2019 in the aftermath of August 5 decisions; in 2020 and 2021, the revision wasn’t held as the process for delimitation of Assembly constituencies was on.
“Assembly elections in Jammu and Kashmir can be held only after Electoral Rolls are revised and Polling Stations rationalized,” sources said.
The three-member Delimitation Panel was headed by Justice Ranjana Prakash Desai, a retired judge of the Supreme Court. Then Chief Election Commissioner Sushil Chandra (now retired) and Jammu and Kashmir Election Commissioner K K Sharma were its two ex-officio members.
According to the orders of the Commission, set up under the Jammu and Kashmir Reorganisation Act of 2019, the Union Territory will have 90 Assembly constituencies — 43 in Jammu Division and 47 in Kashmir — with nine of them being reserved for the Scheduled Tribes.
It also brought areas of Rajouri and Poonch under the Anantnag Parliamentary seat.
The erstwhile Assembly had 87 seats — 46 in Kashmir, 37 in Jammu and four in Ladakh. In the reorganisation of the erstwhile State, Ladakh was declared as a Union Territory without an Assembly.
The Panel submitted its final report on May 5, just a day before its two-year tenure was to end.