PDP leader Parvez Wafa said holding polls is unjustified, ironic and uncalled for.
Srinagar: Jammu and Kashmir’s two major political parties-National Conference (NC) and People’s Democratic Party (PDP)-have scoffed at lieutenant governor Girish Chandra Murmu for his suggestion that elections to the Assembly in the recently carved out Union Territory (UT) will be held soon.
“We’ve been pushed into a very difficult situation after the illegal and unconstitutional repeal of Article 370 and bifurcation of our state. People are angry and at loss. Their leadership, including three former chief ministers, has been incarcerated and the situation is fluid,” said senior NC leader and MP Muhammad Akbar Lone.
“How can one think of taking part in any election in such a situation?” he asked. However, he added, “Our leaders should be released immediately. Once they are out, they will hold deliberations on the issue within the party and take the final call.”
Meanwhile, PDP leader Parvez Wafa told reporters in Jammu Saturday, “How can elections be held in a situation where leaders of major political groups have been detained in hordes?”
“The way in which the authorities are mulling holding polls is unjustified, ironic and uncalled for. Since the leadership of major political parties and important office leaders are under detention, the idea of holding polls itself loses relevance and is contrary to the democratic ideas. In a democratic setup, polls are a part of the mechanism that delegates power to the people to choose their representatives and it is the duty of the state to ensure free and fair elections,” he said.
Mr Wafa lamented that the PDP’s request to allow its delegation of leaders and workers meet detained party president Mehbooba Mufti was rejected even as NC leaders were allowed to meet their party president and vice-president, both of whom were under detention since August 5.
Mr Murmu Thursday hinted that the Assembly polls in the UT will be held soon. “Elections will come. It is a Union Territory with a legislature. It will not continue like this (under the Centre’s rule),” he said. He also said that the process for holding the democratic exercise will begin soon and that the J&K police will have to play a major role in it.
J&K was split up into two UTs on October 31, more than twelve weeks after the abrogation of Article 370 of the Constitution under which, the erstwhile state enjoyed special status within the Indian Union.
The last Assembly of the united J&K elected through the 2014 elections was dissolved by the then governor Satya Pal Malik on November 22 last year to stall the attempt by PDP, NC and Congress to form a government.