AAP stages protest, demands early assembly polls in Jammu & Kashmir

Jammu: Activists of the Aam Aadmi Party (AAP) on Saturday staged a protest outside the Nirvachan Bhawan headquarters here, demanding early assembly polls in Jammu and Kashmir. The protesters were led by former minister Harsh Dev Singh.

The protesters were carrying placards and raised slogans against the Election Commission, accusing it of working under the tutelage of the BJP and allowing its “proxy rule” to continue in the Union Territory.

“The ECI is holding elections in other states but is silent on the (assembly) polls in Jammu and Kashmir,” Singh, who is also the chairman of the party’s State Coordination Committee, told reporters.

Maintaining that the elections continued to be denied on one pretext or the other, the AAP leader said flimsy excuses were being given from time to time to deprive the people of J-K of their right to have a democratic government and to continue the proxy rule of the BJP.

The BJP believed that if it could hold the reins of power and run the affairs of state without elections, why at all should it take the risk of seeking peoples’ mandate?” Singh claimed.

There is no hope of democracy getting restored in the downgraded state under the BJP regime.”

Pointing towards the constitutional provisions and the rulings of the Supreme Court, Singh said the top court of the country had categorically observed that fresh Assembly elections in all states, wherein the legislatures were prematurely dissolved, needed to be conducted and completed within a period of six months.

He said the onus lay on the Election Commission to explain and justify its role as an autonomous body and ensure early assembly polls in J-K.  

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