Lashing out at the National Conference- Congress coalition government for its failure to implement the 74th Amendment in Jammu and Kashmir, the BJP on Wednesday said that elections to Urban Local Bodies would prove to be a futile exercise without the implementation of the Act.
"The NC-Congress coalition government in J-K has failed to implement the 74th Amendment to the Constitution of India which has given ample powers to corporations," BJP State General Secretary and former mayor Kavinder Gupta said.
Gupta averred that despite Section 42 of the J-K Municipal Corporation Act, which contained provisions governing the functions of the corporation, it was unfortunate that the necessary powers had not been given to the body.
He further pointed out that as per Section 5 of the Municipal Corporation Act, elections to the corporation should have been completed before the expiry of its tenure.
"More than three years from the expiration of the term of last corporation, the state government is yet to take any steps to reconstitute the same," he added.
Commenting on the recent notification issued by J-K's chief electoral officer regarding the various wards, Gupta alleged that the manner in which seats had been reserved for different categories for the Jammu Municipal Corporation seemed politically motivated.
Gupta pointed out that although Section 6 of the J-K Municipal Corporation Act stated that the population in no ward should be less than 7,500, no steps had been taken till date taken in this regard.
As a result, Gupta claimed there were certain wards which had populations of between 4,000 to 6,000 while, in others, it was more than 10,000, causing disparities that needed to be removed before holding any elections to the corporation.
"It also seems that the whole reservation exercise has been undertaken to debar the genuine representatives of the people who were instrumental in strengthening the last corporation," Gupta alleged.
It also seems that the whole exercise for reservation has been undertaken to debar the vocal and the genuine representatives who were instrumental for strengthening the last corporation.
He gave instance of the reservation of the seats of former Mayors, Dy Mayor and even the persons who had headed different committees of the corporation.