Panchayat polls from April 13
16-Phase Election To Conclude On June 18
GK NEWS NETWORK
Jammu, Mar 14: Jammu and Kashmir will go for Panchayat polls after a gap of 10 years from April 13 as the State’s Chief Electoral Officer (CEO) Monday issued the notification announcing the schedule for 16-phase rural local body elections. The final phase of polls will be held on June 18.
The non-party basis general elections to Panchayats will be held through ballot boxes. The J&K Panchayat Raj Act, 1989 does not allow the use of Electronic Voting Machine (EVMs) in Panchayat elections.
There will be 33 percent reservation for women in the elections while Scheduled Caste and Scheduled Tribes will also get reservation in total number of seats.
The last elections to the Panchayats were held in 2000-01 after a gap of 23 years. The Panchayats elected in 2001 had completed their term in June 2006. Eight blocks including Kupwara, Kangan (Ganderbal), Budgam, Qaimoh (main block) in district Kulgam, Qaimoh Partly (main block in district Kulgam), Udhampur, Samba and Bishnah in Jammu will go for first phase of polling on April 13. The notification for these blocks will be issued on March 18.
The last phase of elections in four far-off blocks including Khaltsi and Suspol in Leh district and Lungnuk and Shargole in Kargil district will be held on June 18.
Five phases of the elections have been scheduled in April, seven in May and four in June. Notification for a particular phase of polling would be issued 20 to 26 days in advance. For instance, the notification for April 13 polling would be issued on March 18.
Talking to the reporters here this evening, the Chief Electoral Officer (CEO) J&K, B R Sharma said that Election Authority has decided to compile and notify the names of all the Sarpanchs and the Panchs duly elected in accordance with the provisions of the J&K Panchayati Raj Act 1989 by or before June 30.
He maintained that upon the issuance of such notification the Halqa Panchayats shall be deemed to have been duly constituted.
“After the oath-taking ceremony of Panchs and Sarpanchs the process for constitution of Block Development Councils (BDCs) will be initiated within a period of one month,” he maintained.
Giving details about the Panchayat elections, Sharma said the counting of votes will be taken up immediately after the process of polling is over and the results will be announced immediately thereafter.
He informed that the Panchayat polls in 2001 were held on hand-written electoral rolls but computerized Panchayat rolls have been prepared for the forthcoming polls.
“The government had appointed a Delimitation Commission to freshly delimit the number of Panch and Sarpanch constituencies. Over 50 lakh voters will exercise their right to franchise in the Panchayat polls,” he maintained.
The CEO further informed that the number of Sarpanch constituencies has gone up to 4130 from 2702 in 2001 while there will be 29719 Panch constituencies. The number of Panch constituencies in 2001 was 20559.
The number of blocks has also increased from 121 in 2001 to 143 in 2011 while the number of total electorate will be 50, 68,975.
He maintained that in the process of finalizing the election schedule, the Election Authority has taken into account both security forces availability and the schedule of school examinations, to avoid holding elections during the examination period. Besides, polling stations are mostly located in school buildings.
The candidates for the elections of Sarpanchs and Panchs would be given a week’s time to file nomination papers, which would be followed by routine process of scrutiny and withdrawal. The candidates would be given a minimum time of 15 days for campaigning.
Every contesting candidate will have to maintain day-to-day expenditure record in the prescribed register which will be supplied to the contesting candidate in the form of ‘Expenditure Register’ from the date of filing nomination to the date of declaration of results.
The Election Authority has also fixed the limit of expenditure for different categories of candidates (Sarpanch-Rs 6000 and Panch-Rs 3000) to be incurred by them.
Sharma said that the election authority has decided that compulsory identification of voters will be made in the Panchayat polls. Electors who have already been provided with EPIC shall be identified through EPIC only. However, the Election Authority has also notified a list of 19 alternative documents which can also be used for the purpose of identification, by the electors who are yet to be provided EPICs. The state government earlier Monday said it will hold elections to local bodies as per the state’s own laws and will not amend the constitution in order to follow the national pattern.
Lastupdate on : Mon, 14 Mar 2011 21:30:00 Makkah time
Lastupdate on : Mon, 14 Mar 2011 18:30:00 GMT
Lastupdate on : Tue, 15 Mar 2011 00:00:00 IST
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