Centre constitutes delimitation panel for J-K and 4 northeastern states | Latest News India - Hindustan Times
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Centre constitutes delimitation panel for J-K and 4 northeastern states

Hindustan Times, New Delhi | ByHT Correspondent
Mar 07, 2020 04:57 AM IST

A law ministry notification said that former Supreme Court judge Ranjana Prakash Desai has been appointed as the chairperson of the Delimitation Commission.

The union government on Friday evening started the process of redrawing the Lok Sabha and assembly constituencies in the Union Territory of Jammu and Kashmir and the northeastern states of Assam, Arunachal Pradesh, Manipur and Nagaland. In 2002, the last delimitation was conducted across India but these states were left out due to various reasons.

A woman crosses barbed concertina wire as a Paramilitary soldier stands guard during restrictions in Downtown area in Srinagar, Jammu and Kashmir, India, on Tuesday, February 11, 2020.(Photo: Waseem Andrabi / Hindustan Times)
A woman crosses barbed concertina wire as a Paramilitary soldier stands guard during restrictions in Downtown area in Srinagar, Jammu and Kashmir, India, on Tuesday, February 11, 2020.(Photo: Waseem Andrabi / Hindustan Times)

A law ministry notification said that former Supreme Court judge Ranjana Prakash Desai has been appointed as the chairperson of the Delimitation Commission. In 2002, retd. Justice Kuldeep Singh acted as the chairman. Election commissioner Sushil Chandra and state election commissioners of J&K and the four states will be the ex officio members, the notificaiton said.

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“The Commission will delimit the constituencies of Jammu and Kashmir in accordance with the provisions the Jammu and Kashmir Reorganisation Act, and of Assam, Arunachal Pradesh, Manipur and Nagaland in accordance with the provisions of the Delimitation Act, 2002, the notification said.

The delimitation in J&K comes nine months after the Article 370 was scrapped and the state was divided into two union territories. The Jammu and Kashmir Reorganisation Act, 2019 which was cleared in Parliament in August 2019, mentioned new delimitation to redraw the constituencies of J&K according to section 62 of the Act.

In the four states of North East India, delimitation could not be carried out along with other Indian states due to prevailing security reasons. But now, the government thinks the situation has changed.

The notification of the law ministry said that “it appears that the circumstances that led to the deferring of the delimitation exercise have ceased to exist and that the delimitation of the constituencies as envisaged under the Delimitation Act, 2002 could be carried out now”. Out of the four NE states where delimitation would be undertaken, three are ruled by the BJP—Assam, Arunachal Pradesh and Manipur. Nagaland is ruled by NDPP, a local outfit.

A Congress leader added, “we will keep a close watch on the exercise because it comes amid prevailing situation arising out of CAA in the North east and J&K was locked down for a long time after the abrogation of Article 370. Such exercise needs caution as security issues are involved.”

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