Days after the Delimitation Commission on Jammu and Kashmir notified its final report, the BJP on Saturday expressed hope that the assembly elections will be held within the next six months and the party will form the government in the union territory.
On Thursday, the delimitation panel, formed in March 2020, notified its final report giving six additional assembly seats to the Jammu region and one to the Kashmir Valley and bringing areas of Rajouri and Poonch under the Anantnag parliamentary seat. As a result, the Jammu division will now have 43 assembly seats and Kashmir 47 in the 90-member house.
“The delimitation commission has completed its exercise…now wait for four to six months (for the assembly elections), and you will see the BJP forming the next government with its chief minister,” J-K BJP president Ravinder Raina told reporters on the sidelines of a function at the party headquarters here.
Congress leader Raju Sharma, along with scores of his supporters, joined the BJP in the presence of Raina, former deputy chief minister Kavinder Gupta and BJP general secretary (organisation) Ashok Koul.
“BJP is growing very fast with the daily joining of prominent leaders from opposition camps, and we are moving towards our mission of 50 plus seats in the next assembly elections,” Raina said, claiming that the wave is in favour of his party due to the pro-people policies of the Prime Minister Narendra Modi-led government and the hard work of the party workers.
Earlier addressing the function, Raina drew a parallel between the soldiers guarding the borders and the BJP workers and said, “the BJP is a party of nationalists, and everyone who loves the country and its flag will join the party”.
“Congress lost ground across the country because it has no policy…It was speaking for Pakistan, terrorists and separatists and have hurt the nationalists who agitated for ‘Ek Vidhan Ek Pradhan aur Ek Nishan’ across the country, especially in Jammu and Kashmir,” he said.
Raina said the next assembly election would be important, and “we are happy that people from across Jammu and Kashmir – irrespective of their colour, creed and religion – are gathering under the banner of BJP”.
Referring to the recommendations of the delimitation commission to the government about the reservation of seats for Kashmiri migrants and Pakistan-occupied J-K refugees, he said everyone would get justice under the BJP, which has already revoked the special status under Article 370 (in August 2019) to end decades-old discrimination with sections of the society.
The Delimitation Commission had said it would recommend that the government provide at least two seats, including a female from the community of Kashmiri migrants, in the Legislative Assembly, at par with the power of nominated members of the Puducherry Assembly under which a member has a right to vote.
The commission, which was entrusted with delimiting the Assembly and parliamentary constituencies in the UT of Jammu and Kashmir based on the 2011 Census, has also recommended that the government consider giving the displaced persons from Pakistan-occupied Jammu and Kashmir some representation in the Assembly through nomination.
Meanwhile, Chairman Sikh United Front Sudarshan Singh Wazir on Saturday demanded that 50 per cent of the 24 seats in the Assembly, reserved for the areas under illegal occupation of Pakistan, be given to the POJK refugees on their area-wise population.
The two seats for Kashmiri migrants should focus on pandits, Sikhs and other displaced communities from the valley, Wazir told reporters here.
“We welcome the proposed recommendation of the delimitation commission for POJK refugees and Kashmiri migrants…we want the government to ensure equitable distribution of the seats without any favour to anyone,” he said.