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HT Correspondents, Hindustan Times
Srinagar, November 13, 2012
Registering their protest against mainstream parties for the latter's alleged failure to empower local bodies, a section of panches and sarpanches of Jammu and Kashmir have decided to boycott the four seats of the legislative council reserved for them.
In a statement, the All Jammu and Kashmir Panchayat Conference (AJKPC) said the members had decided not to participate in the elections because "they don't want to be associated with mainstream politics unless empowered".

The association, however, said the boycott had nothing to do with the threat from the Hizbul Mujahideen, which had asked them to dissociate themselves from elections.

The elections to fill two vacancies will be held on December 3.