J&K Polls Will Be Held At the Right Time: Rijiju


Says EC An Independent Body, Govt Doesn’t Make Anyone ‘Dance To Its Tunes’

Srinagar- Union Law Minister Kiren Rijiju on Thursday said the Election Commission is an independent body and while the government provides help to the poll panel for smooth functioning, it does not make anyone “dance” to its tunes.

Speaking to reporters in south Kashmir’s Anantnag district, the minister also said the media does not talk about the development that has taken place in Jammu and Kashmir as a result of the DDC elections but only about assembly polls.

District Development Council elections were held in Jammu and Kashmir in 2020, a year after the erstwhile state lost its special status following the abrogation of Article 370 of the Constitution and was divided into two union territories.

Responding to a question about the Opposition’s charge that the EC is acting on the directions of the government and the BJP, Rijiju said the poll panel is impartial and independent.

“Being the administrative minister incharge — the Election Commission of India reports to the law ministry — I want to say that the Election Commission of India is an impartial, transparent, empowered and independent body,” he said.

The government’s role in the poll panel, he said, is limited to making arrangements for its smooth functioning.

“The government provides help to the Election Commission because without government help neither the courts can function nor any other institution. It is the duty of the government to make arrangements so that these institutions can function but we do not make anyone dance to our tunes,” he added.

Asked when assembly elections will be held in Jammu and Kashmir, Rijiju said they will be held at the right time.

“DDC elections were held in a wonderful manner and because of those elections so much good work is happening. You won’t write about the development, you will only harp on about elections.

“Those elections will happen in time because the dates have not been announced yet,” he said.

‘People Of Kashmir Were Kept In Dark For 70 Years’

Rijiju said that people of Kashmir were kept in dark for 70 years and they have suffered a lot but now they want love and relief.
He said that history cannot be changed but people of Kashmir were kept in the dark for 70 years.

“Truth was concealed for over 70 years but I brought the Parliament record of Pandit Jawaharlal Nehru before people as history should be presented in its true form not as per opinion because we can’t change history,” he said.

“People of Kashmir have suffered a lot of difficulties, suppression and other things but time has now come that they need love, care and relief. The Modi government is working on it, that is why I visited Harde Kichru village in Anantnag,” Rijiju said.

“We have made a provision to have special courts for trial of heinous crimes like rape, murder and other such crimes and we brought criminal amendment bill in year 2018,” he said.

A road map for fast track courts besides fast track special courts under POCSO Act has been made so that perpetrators will be dealt with strictly, he said.

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