SMC delimitation move hits ‘wrong-channel’ roadblock
Srinagar, Jan 23: Ahead of the upcoming urban local bodies polls in the State, the move by Srinagar Municipal Corporation to increase the wards has hit a roadblock with chief electoral officer of the State deciding to return the proposal on the grounds of routing it through the wrong channel.
Informed sources told Greater Kashmir that chief electoral officer (CEO) B.R. Sharma has taken exception to the submitting of the proposal directly by Srinagar Municipal Corporation.
Following the directions from CEO in November last year, the SMC had proposed increase of seven wards from the present 68 in accordance with the tentative population figures of the 2011 census.
The delimitation proposal, according to the sources, would be sent back to the Corporation within next few days asking them to route it through the district election officer.
“We are returning it to SMC asking them to route it through deputy commissioner who is the district election officer in accordance with the law,” a top official in chief electoral office told Greater Kashmir.
The polls for Municipal Corporations, Councils and Committees are likely to be held in March-April. As already reported by Greater Kashmir, the delimitation proposal of Municipal Councils and Committees has been submitted to Housing and Urban Development Department (HUDD) by CEO for approval. If the proposal is cleared, the number of wards of Municipal Councils and Committees in JK will go up to 1046.
Meanwhile, there is no scope for increasing the wards of Jammu Municipal Corporation as per the population figures of 2011 census, highly placed sources said.
“There is hardly any room for increasing the wards of JMC as one ward should have at least required population of 7500 by the Municipal Corporation Act 2000,” they said, adding that no proposal regarding delimitation of JMC has been submitted to CEO.
Pertinently, the delimitation prior to 2005 urban local bodies polls, which left SMC with less wards than JMC, had come under strong criticism from different quarters.
Senior leader of Peoples Democratic Party, Tariq Hameed Karra, who later became Finance Minister in the previous PDP-Congress coalition Government, raised strong objections over, what he termed, discrimination with Srinagar city vis-a-vis creation of wards.
As Housing and Urban Development Minister, Karra, had vociferously pleaded for equalizing the number of wards of SMC with JMC, but his repeated pleas went unheard.
As per the Jammu and Kashmir Municipal Corporation Act, 2000, the delimitation of wards for holding the elections of Corporations shall be done by the concerned deputy commissioner as per the rules prescribed by the Government. The Act also says that the population in each ward shall not be less than 7500 and the number of total seats to be filled by direct election shall not exceed 75.
Lastupdate on : Mon, 23 Jan 2012 21:30:00 Makkah time
Lastupdate on : Mon, 23 Jan 2012 18:30:00 GMT
Lastupdate on : Tue, 24 Jan 2012 00:00:00 IST
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