Election Commission tells Jammu and Kashmir LG the Constitutional position vis-a-vis the timing of elections
New Delhi: Election Commission of India has taken taken exception to statements attributed to G.C. Murmu, the Lieutenant Governor (LG) of J&K linking delimitation with the timing of J&K polls
In a statement on Tuesday 28 July, the Election Commission said that it would like to state that in the Constitutional scheme of things, the timings etc. of elections is the sole remit of Election Commission of India. Before deciding the timing, the Commission takes into consideration all the relevant factors including topography, weather, sensitivities arising out of regional and local festivities in the area(s) where the election is to take place. For example, in the current times, Covid 19 has introduced a new dynamic, which has to be and shall be taken into consideration at the due time. In the instant case, the outcome of Delimitation is also germane to the decision. Similarly, availability of central forces and railway coaches, etc. for the transportation of CPFs are important factors. All this is done after meticulous homework by the senior officials of the Commission and a detailed assessment in due consultation with concerned authorities. The Commission itself schedules a visit to the concerned State wherever required and holds extensive consultations with all the stakeholders.
It would be proper for authorities other than Election Commission to refrain from making such statements which virtually tantamount to interfering with the Constitutional mandate of Election Commission, it has been emphasised.
The EC statement comes following a report appearing in The Tribune on Tuesday, titled “J&K polls after delimitation” attributed to Murmu, the J&K Lieutenant Governor. Similar statements of LG were earlier reported by The Hindu on 18 November 2019; News18 on 14 November 2019; Hindustan Times on 26 June 2020 and Economic Times (ePaper) dated 28 July 2020.