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Alarmed over voting right to non-locals, Farooq calls all-party meet

Rabbi |

Alarmed over the announcement of the Election Commission that about 25 lakh new voters, including non-locals, will be added to the electoral rolls prepared for the Jammu & Kashmir (J&K) assembly elections, National Conference (NC) chief and Member of parliament (MP) Dr. Farooq Abdullah convened an all-party meeting at his residence in Srinagar on Monday.

Except Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP), all political parties of J&K were invited for the meeting to formulate a joint strategy to address the issue. Abdullah personally spoke to the leaders of the Opposition parties to join the meeting scheduled to be held on August 22.

A NC spokesperson said, “Dr. Abdullah has invited leaders of all political parties for a meeting to discuss the recent announcement regarding inclusion of non-locals in the voter list”.

Dr Farooq spoke to PDP president Mehbooba Mufti, JKPCC president Waqar Rasool, JKPCC working president Raman Bhalla, Muhammad Yousaf Tarigami of the CPI(M), Apni Party president Syed Altaf Bukhari, Peoples Conference chief Sajjad Ghani Lone and a leader of Aam Admi Party among others to attend this meeting.

Slamming the BJP government’s move, Mehbooba Mufti called it the “last nail in the coffin of electoral democracy of J&K”. “Jammu and Kashmir has become a laboratory for the BJP. They conduct experiments here, and later implement them in other parts of the country. All this is being done in the garb of the so-called ‘integration of J&K with India,” she noted.

The PDP leader further pointed out that not only in J&K, they (the BJP government) are also rigging mandates throughout the country.

She said, “Rigging elections has become a regular practice before and even after polls. This is what we have witnessed recently in the state of Maharashtra. Agencies like the Enforcement Directorate (ED), which has now become a BJP’s alliance partner, are being used to achieve the gaol.”

She even claimed that those non-locals being added to the electoral rolls are BJP voters.

Mehbooba alleged that the BJP has only one objective, of forming their government everywhere by resorting to any all means. They intend to install a fascist government in J&K through fraudulent elections.

“A Muslim-majority state wanted to be part of secular India. But people have lost confidence in voting since everything is happening in BJP’s interest,” she contended.

It is pertinent to mention here that on Wednesday, J&K Chief Electoral Officer (CEO) Hirdesh Kumar said that about 25 lakh new voters, including non-locals, are expected to be included in the electoral rolls in J&K. The special summary revision of electoral rolls is being done for the first time after the abrogation of Article 370 in the year 2019.