A senior National Conference leader said there was now a strong possibility that NC MPs will take part in the future meetings of the delimitation commission. (Photo by Waseem Andrabi/ Hindustan Times)
A senior National Conference leader said there was now a strong possibility that NC MPs will take part in the future meetings of the delimitation commission. (Photo by Waseem Andrabi/ Hindustan Times)

National Conference reconsidering boycott of delimitation commission meetings

Many NC leaders had suggested that party’s members of parliament, Farooq Abdullah, (Srinagar), Akbar Lone (Baramulla) and Hasnain Masoodi (Anantnag) should take part in the future meetings of the delimitation commission.
By Mir Ehsan
PUBLISHED ON MAY 31, 2021 04:25 PM IST

Jammu and Kashmir National Conference party is reconsidering its earlier decision not to participate in the meetings of Delimitation Commission, which is tasked with redrawing parliamentary and assembly segments of the union territory, said senior functionaries.

NC spokesman Imran Nabi Dar said party president Farooq Abdullah along with some other senior leaders of the party will take a decision on the matter.

“In the virtual meeting of party leadership last week it was decided that Dr Farooq Abdullah along with senior leaders will take a final call on this issue,” he said on Monday and added that “no committee will be formed on this matter”.

Recently, in a virtual meeting, Farooq Abdullah and vice president Omar Abdullah interacted with party leaders from both the provinces of the UT and also revisited the earlier decision not to participate in the meetings of the delimitation commission considering it to be a useless and illegal exercise until Article 370 was restored and Jammu and Kashmir was again made a state.

In the meeting, many leaders suggested that NC parliament members, Farooq Abdullah, (Srinagar), Akbar Lone (Baramulla) and Hasnain Masoodi (Anantnag) should take part in the future meetings of the commission and shouldn’t give the Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) “an open field” to “manipulate” things during the delimitation process of the erstwhile state.

Jammu and Kashmir’s special status under the Indian Constitution was abrogated in August 2019 by revocation of Article 370 and the state was divided into two union territories of Jammu and Kashmir and Ladakh by a resolution passed in the parliament. The delimitation commission is now busy with the process to redraw parliamentary and assembly segments in the 20 districts of the UT.

A senior NC leader said that there is now a strong possibility that NC MPs will take part in the future meetings of the commission.”Though everybody wants restoration of all the laws that have been snatched [away] from us, but the skipping of [the] meeting will only help [the] BJP; and the party wants to prevent that,” he said. Most Srinagar based political outfits were opposed to the delimitation exercise.

The commission was set up by the Central law ministry on March 6, 2020, under Section 3 of the Delimitation Act 2002, the Delimitation Commission for J&K with the mandate to redraw the constituencies of the UT of Jammu and Kashmir in accordance with the provisions under the Jammu and Kashmir Reorganization Act 2019, which bifurcated the state into union territories of J&K and Ladakh. The NC had earlier said that its parliament members had conveyed to the commission their reasons for skipping the meeting.

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