A delegation of political leaders, led by Jammu & Kashmir National Conference leader Farooq Abdullah, will meet the Election Commission of India (ECI) on Thursday seeking elections in Jammu and Kashmir.
The decision to meet the ECI was taken after a meeting at Abdullah’s residence in Jammu on March 11. Besides National Conference, representatives of the People's Democratic Party, Congress, Aam Aadmi Party, J&K National Panthers Party, CPI, CPI(M), and Awami National Conference will be part of the delegations.
Congress chief spokesperson Ravinder Sharma, JKNPP leader Harsh Dev Singh, NC provincial president Ratan Lal Gupta, Awami National Conference chief Muzaffar Shah, PDP leader Amrik Singh Reen, CPI(M) leader Master Hari Singh, Mission Statehood president Sunil Dimple are likely to be part of the delegation.
The BJP and some smaller parties, considered to be the allies of the saffron party, are not part of the delegation. Jammu and Kashmir have been under Central rule for more than four years after the collapse of the BJP-PDP coalition in June 2018.
After the abrogation of Article 370 and the divisions of Jammu and Kashmir into two union territories- J&K and Ladakh- leaders of regional parties and the Congress have been demanding the holding of elections to restore democracy in the UT. After the removal of Article 370, the BJP had linked the restoration of statehood to delimitation and revision of electoral rolls. Both exercises were completed last year.
The delegation is scheduled to meet national leaders of the opposition camp at Constitution Club of India, Rafi Marg, New Delhi and apprise them of the political situation in Jammu and Kashmir.
It will seek help for the holding of elections and restoration of the statehood to the former state. The delegation will then meet the ECI and present a memorandum for assembly elections in J&K. It is for the first time that several political parties in Jammu and Kashmir have come together to demand an election in the state.
After returning from Delhi, the parties will meet again in Jammu to decide the future course of action.