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Jammu and Kashmir Delimitation Commission likely to get another extension

Jammu and Kashmir Delimitation Commission likely to get another extension

The Jammu and Kashmir Delimitation Commission is headed by Justice Ranjana Prakash Desai. File | Photo Credit: Moorthy R.V.

Jammu: The Delimitation Commission, constituted by the Centre on March 6, 2020 to redraw Lok Sabha and assembly constituencies of the union territory, is likely to get another extension in its term.

This may further delay any announcement of Assembly elections in the Union Territory.

Sources said the Commission is meeting this month to decide on its second extension and the period of that extension.

The Commission is likely to give its draft report to five associate members - 3 Lok Sabha members of the National Conference, and 2 of the Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP).

If the Commission gets another extension, the holding of Assembly elections in J&K might get pushed towards the end of 2022 or even beyond that, since these elections can only be held after all the Assembly constituencies are redrawn by it and the population and area of each delimited constituency is notified.

The commission was formed in accordance with the provisions of the Jammu and Kashmir Reorganisation Act, 2019, which bifurcated the state into union territories of J&K and Ladakh. The union territory of Jammu and Kashmir came into being on October 31, 2019 after the state was reorganised.

The Commission is headed by former Supreme Court judge, Justice Ranjana Prakash Desai and its term was extended by another year in March 2021.

Its other members are Chief Election Commissioner, Sushil Chandra and J&K Election Commissioner, K.K.Sharma.

The commission is likely to reserve 9 seats for Scheduled Tribes, which would get such reservation for the first time in J&K.

Seven seats are expected to be reserved for Scheduled Castes.

The Commission will also have to redraw the boundaries of the 7 new constituencies likely to be added to the 83.

Before its bifurcation into two UTs, J&K had 87 assembly constituencies - 4 in the Ladakh region, 47 in the Kashmir Valley and 36 in the Jammu region.

Of the likely 7 new constituencies, Jammu division is to get 6 and the Valley 1.

Constituted by an act of the Parliament under the provisions of Part V of the J&K Reorganisation Act of 2019, the Commission will make its draft report public by this month to get feedback from political parties, civil society groups, and individual citizens.

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TAGS:J&K Delimitation Commission
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