SRINAGAR The Government of India on Wednesday evaded direct response to delay in holding assembly elections in Jammu and Kashmir.
Responding to a question by senior congress leader and former Chief Minister of the state, Ghulam Nabi Azad, minister of state in the ministry of Home Affairs, G. Kishan Reddy said Election Commission of India has not yet fixed the dates.
He responded in affirmative to the question whether it was a fact that on 3rd January this year, the then Home Minister (Rajnath Singh) had stated in the Rajya Sabha that the Central Government was ready to hold elections in Jammu and Kashmir Legislative Assembly along with Lok Sabha Elections, if Election Commission desires so
The superintendence, direction and control of conducting elections to Parliament and State Legislatures are vested with the Election Commission of India, Reddy said responding to the question on the reasons for not holding the Jammu and Kashmir Assembly elections along with Lok Sabha elections and when does Government plan to hold polls.
The Governor’s rule in Jammu and Kashmir was imposed initially on June 20, 2018, and the State Assembly was kept in suspended animation after the state plunged into a political crisis when the Mehbooba Mufti-led coalition government was reduced to minority following withdrawal of support by the 25-member BJP in the state.
Governor Satypal Malik on November 21, 2018, dissolved the 87-member state assembly after the PDP, supported by the Congress and their arch-rivals National Conference, had staked claim to form the government.
Simultaneously, the two-member People’s Conference led by Sajjad Lone had also staked claim to form a government with 25 members of the BJP and other 18 unknown members.
The governor had dissolved the assembly citing horse-trading and lack of stability to form a government as the reasons.