Poll Body To Take Call On J&K Elections, Statehood After Assembly Polls: Amit Shah


SRINAGAR: Restoration of statehood to Jammu and Kashmir (J&K), as promised by the Centre, would be done after the Assembly poll in the Union Territory (UT) and a call to conduct elections would be taken by the Election Commission of India (ECI), Union Home Minister Amit Shah said today.

Talking to news agency ANI in a interview, Shah noted that there has been a marked improvement in the security situation in Jammu and Kashmir as the lowest militancy-related incidents were reported in the recent past.

He also insisted that Article 370, which was done away with by the Centre in August 2019, had actually harmed the country and the BJP had always been against it.

Noting that development in J&K was leading to gradual ending of militancy, Shah said, “See all the figures. There is a lot of change in Jammu and Kashmir.” Indicating that he could not comment on the timing of the poll in J&K, Shah said, “I had clearly stated that statehood will be restored in Jammu and Kashmir after elections. The process for preparation of voters’ list is nearing completion in the UT. Now, the Election Commission has to take a call on elections.”

On the issue of the emergence of new leadership in J&K, Shah said that new leadership would emerge from local bodies where poll had been held earlier. “The panches and sarpanches, who have been elected…new leadership will emerge from them…Since the time militancy started in J&K, the militancy-related figures are at their lowest today. Crores of tourists and ‘yatris’ are visiting J&K now. This is a huge change,” he noted.

Shah said removing Article 370 has been on the agenda of BJP and Jana Sangh. He also referred to India’s first PM Jawaharlal Nehru in the context of Article 370. “Since 1950, it was on our agenda to remove Article 370 from J&K. Today, the way J&K is witnessing development and decrease in militancy shows that change is coming,” he said. Shah said those slamming the BJP should answer in whose tenure militancy grew in J&K.

“As far as elections are concerned, do they not remember that local body polls were held under our rule? These did not take place for 70 years. Three families were holding sway in J&K and they are making noise…Farooq Abdullah had gone to England. In whose tenure, militancy grew…there should be an answer,” Shah said.

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( With inputs from : kashmirlife.net )

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