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Delimitation commission yet to unveil draft proposal

Head of 3-member panel to complete term on March 5

Srinagar, January, 28, 2021: The delimitation commission constituted by the Government of India is yet to unveil draft proposal for the delimitation of Assembly segments of Jammu & Kashmir Union Territory even as its head will complete her term in the first week of March.

The panel headed by former Supreme Court judge, Justice (retd.) Ranjana Prakash Desai was set-up on March 06, 2019 to draw boundaries of 90 Assembly segments and five parliamentary seats of J&K UT. Going by the notification issued by Union Ministry of Law and Justice for setting up the panel, its head will complete her one-year term on March 5, 2020.

“The appointment of Justice (Retd.) Ranjana Prakash Desai shall be for a period of one year from the publication of this notification in the official gazette or till further orders, whichever is earlier,” reads the notification, a copy of which is in possession of news agency—Kashmir News Observer (KNO).

Going by the law governing delimitation, the panel has to come up with the draft proposal to seek suggestions and objections from the public before finalizing the process.

Till date, the panel has also not held any meeting with its associate members from J&K who were nominated by the Lok Sabha Speaker Om Birla.

In May last year, Farooq Abdullah, Mohammad Akbar Lone, Hasnain Masoodi, Jugal Kishore Sharma and Union minister Jitendra Singh were nominated as the panel’s associate members from Jammu & Kashmir.

Later, the Commission had said that that formal deliberations with Associate Members would start soon to expedite the process of delimitation.

“Delimitation Commission has already started functioning since March, 2020. It has held four formal meetings as yet. All Associate Members have already been nominated for each State/ Union Territory concerned. The Commission has kept 15th June 2020 as the date for freezing of administrative districts in these States/ UTs,” read an official handout issued by the Election Comission of India.

The poll-body had also said that data collection work has also been completed.

It is worthwhile to mention that Election Commissioner Sushil Chandra and State Election Commissioner Kewal Kumar Sharma are also members of the panel mandated to fix boundaries of 90 Assembly segments and reserve seats for schedule castes and schedule tribes within them—(KNO)

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