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More troops ready for J&K polls: Centre

india Updated: Oct 15, 2008 23:24 IST
Aurangzeb Naqshbandi
Aurangzeb Naqshbandi
Hindustan Times
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The Union home ministry has agreed to provide additional 600 companies of security forces required for conducting violence-free polls in J&K in November.

Union home ministry sources said the security establishment in J&K had projected a demand of 600 companies of central security forces at their meetings with the Election Commission earlier this month.

On Tuesday, the commission could not finalise any poll dates for the state.

Chief Election Commissioner N Gopalaswami had said the commission was still assessing the situation in J&K and would come up with a decision in next few days.

The differences in the three-member EC over holding of polls in J&K in November have come in the open. While the CEC wants polls to be held in March-April, the other two commissioners - Navin Chawla and S Y Quraishi - favour immediate elections.

Both the CEC and Chawla have changed their respective stand since September. While Gopalaswami was for early polls, Chawla had voiced opposition on the ground that the situation was not conducive in the state in the aftermath of Amarnath land row.

Sources said Chawla seemed to agree with the CEC that the prevailing situation in J&K was complex but at the same time argued that these were complexities that would not disappear in next few months.

There is also a view that the separatist forces, including the Hurriyat Conference, could get further strengthened during this period and the situation might worsen.

A senior government official also hinted at the Home Ministry's reservations at its ability to spare such a large number of security forces for just one state at the time of Lok Sabha polls.