The all-party meeting chaired by Chief Minister Mehbooba Mufti in Jammu on Sunday failed to arrive at a consensus on holding panchayat polls in February, in the wake of prevalent hostile atmosphere fuelled by six civilian deaths in January.
Provincial president of the opposition National Conference (NC), Nasir Sogami, said that his party argued in the meeting that the ground situation in Kashmir was not conducive to the holding of panchayat elections. While three were arrested, efforts were on to nab the others, Goyal said. She asked the students that whenever they go outside university for any goal, they should make entry at the main gate and also inform at the nearest police station. The bitter truth is that today people from adjacent villages come to throw stones at the security forces during such an operation.
The proposal for holding the poll in June is an excuse, said sources, because April to July is the tourist season in the Valley. "But we believe parliamentary (polls) should be held first", he said. "We are not with the boycott".
He was reacting to reports that majority of political parties favour deferring panchayat polls in the state.
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"Though all the political parties wanted restoration of panchayati Raj institutions in the state, majority of them suggested that the election to these shall be deferred for sometime as situation was not congenial for the objective", said Abdul Haq Khan, Minister for Rural Development, Panchayati Raj, Law and Justice. "Time is, therefore, not ripe to revoke AFSPA", she said.
"Barring some pockets, the situation is overall conducive for the elections", BJP state president Sat Sharma said. The party also opposed the suggestion from the BJP and certain other quarters in the meeting for nominating MLAs as Chairmen of the Block Development Councils in their respective constituencies, by stating that it is not only against the spirit of 73rd amendment but totally against the basic spirit of democracy.
"When bypolls to Anantnag parliamentary seat were deferred previous year due to security concerns, how come the situation is conducive for holding panchayat polls in the State now". The Governor and the Chief Minister also discussed the time-frame for the conduct of the panchayat and the urban local bodies elections.