Farooq Abdullah slams J&K Delimitation Commission, strategy to work in favour of BJP

Pic: Shakeel/Excelsior

Srinagar, Feb 26: Slamming the Jammu and Kashmir Delimitation Commission working to redraw assembly constituencies in the Union Territory, National Conference chief Farooq Abdullah on Saturday said that it is “a planned strategy to favour the Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP).
“I think the Delimitation Commission has worked in favour of the BJP, thinking that they will get the majority of seats in the assembly and they will be able to pass the resolution in favour of what they did on August 5, 2019, has been accepted by J-K assembly,” said Abdullah while addressing a press conference in Srinagar.
The former chief minister alleged that it is being done with an intention that BJP with the majority in the state assembly hopes to pass a resolution in favour of the Centre’s 2019 decision of revocation of Article 370 and creation of two Union Territories.
“The larger plan is to get a resolution passed in favour of Article 370 in the J-K assembly,” he added.
This comes after the Delimitation Commission has accepted certain suggestions made by five associate members from Union Territory of Jammu and Kashmir including National Conference Lok Sabha MPs Farooq Abdullah, Hasnain Masoodi and Akbar Lone and BJP MPs Jitendra Singh and Jugal Kishore, officials said.
The Delimitation Commission met in Delhi today to discuss suggestions of Members of Parliament from Jammu and Kashmir, who are associate members of the panel, on its delimitation draft proposal.
The meeting was chaired by Justice (Retd) Ranjana Prakash Desai and attended by Chief Election Commissioner Sushil Chandra, Jammu and Kashmir Election Commission chief and the Chief Electoral Officer from the Union Territory.
Officials said that Delimitation Commission in its meeting today held discussions at length on the suggestions given by five associate members.
As per the preliminary proposal of the Delimitation Commission, the number of seats in the Jammu region will be increased from the existing 37 to 43, while Kashmir will have one additional seat, taking its tally to 47 seats from the current 46.
However, earlier this month, the commission said that it has accepted certain suggestions made by five associate members from the Union Territory of Jammu and Kashmir including Farooq Abdullah, Hasnain Masoodi, Akbar Lone, Jitendra Singh and Jugal Kishore.
The Jammu and Kashmir Reorganisation Act 2019 notified by the government on August 9, 2019, paved the way for the creation of two Union Territories – Jammu and Kashmir, which will have a legislature and Ladakh, without it.
The Act provides that the number of seats in the Legislative Assembly of Union Territory of Jammu and Kashmir shall be increased from 107 to 114, and delimitation of the constituencies will be determined by the Election Commission. (Agencies)