BJP conspiring to allot larger share of Assembly seats to Kashmir: Harsh

JAMMU: Former minister and NPP chairman Harsh Dev Singh has alleged that BJP was conspiring to allot larger share of Assembly seats to Kashmir, ignoring the aspiration of people from Jammu region.

In a press statement Singh said while delimitation of Assembly Constituencies in J&K sought to have been the priority concern of the BJP, the process has been inordinately delayed creating several apprehensions in the political and social circles. He said it was on August 5, 2019 that the Parliament passed the J&K Reorganization Act providing for 90 Assembly seats for the new UT to be bifurcated in accordance with the new criteria laid down in sec 60 of the said Act.

Harsh Dev said not only were the controversies being created over composition of the Delimitation Commission but BJP had started giving feelers of a possible lower share for Jammu region in the event of Delimitation being held as per census 2011. The BJP in its bid to further appease Kashmir seemed to be planning to give it a higher number of Assembly seats. It is also clear that J&K Reorganization Act of 2019 does not give any weightage to population in the process of delimiting of Assembly seats.

"As per J&K Reorganization Act, Jammu region is entitled a higher number of seats than Kashmir in view of the criteria laid down in section 60 of the said Act. The new criteria laid down in the said Act provided that geographical compactness physical features, existing boundaries of administrative units, facilities of communication and convenience of the public shall be the factors to be taken into consideration while delimiting the constituencies," he added.

He said the population factor has been dropped in the Reorganization Act 2019. And this factor will matter only in the constituencies to be reserved for SC and ST. With the new criteria weighing heavily in favour of Jammu region, it was entitled to atleast 50 seats in Assembly and minimum of 3 seats in Parliament as well, Singh said.


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