September 2019 News

Jammu-Kashmir Block Development Council Polls To Be Held On October 24

29 September 2019

Srinagar: A day after home minister Amit Shah said that there were no restrictions currently in place in Jammu and Kashmir, the Election Authority announced the dates for the J&K Block Development Council (BDC). These elections will be the first to take place in the state since the abrogation of Article 370 on August 5 and would be a test to the security situation. The Election Authority on Sunday announced the poll schedule for the election of chairpersons of Block Development Councils (BDC) in the 310 blocks of Jammu and Kashmir. The Jammu and Kashmir Chief Electoral Officer on Sunday said that the J&K BDC elections will be conducted on October 24 from 9 am till 1 pm. Counting of votes will be held on the same day from 3 pm onwards. The Block Development Council elections will be held in 310 out of 316 blocks in Jammu and Kashmir. 'The scrutiny of nominations will be done on October 10, the last date for withdrawal is October 11 while the polling for these posts will be held on October 24,' Kumar said while announcing the election schedule in Srinagar. Kumar said the elections will be held on party basis and 26,629 panchs and sarpanchs are eligible to vote and contest for the post of BDC chairpersons. Over 18,000 panchs and sarpanchs are eligible to take part in the elections in Jammu division but Kashmir division has only 7528 elected panchs and sarpanchs, news agency PTI reported. On the security situation in J&K, Kumar said the security evaluation was being done by the Home Department of the state and they have assured the election authority that adequate security will be provided for smooth conduct of the process. As many as 69 BDC chairperson posts have been reserved for Scheduled Tribe candidates including 21 women, 25 posts for Scheduled Castes (seven women) and 78 posts for women from General Category. The Block Development Council elections will be completed before the state of Jammu and Kashmir is formally declared a union territory on October 31. Panchayat polls were conducted in J&K last year in December. Earlier, Prime Minister Narendra Modi and Home Minister Amit Shah had shown their intention to hold these polls. With the conduct of these polls in J&K, it will take forward the process towards full devolution of rural and urban local bodies.