‘Non-eligible voters may have been added’: J&K opposition on net rise in electoral roll
The final electoral roll for the Union territory was released on Friday with the net addition of around 772,872 names. The final electoral roll has a total of 8,359,771 electors — 4,291,687 men, 4,067,900 women, and 184 transgender people.
The Opposition parties in Jammu and Kashmir on Saturday said they were apprehensive that “non-eligible” people might have been added as voters in the region’s final electoral roll and they were in the process of going through the entire list.
The final electoral roll for J&K was released on Friday with the net addition of around 772,872 names. The final electoral roll has a total of 8,359,771 electors — 4,291,687 men, 4,067,900 women, and 184 transgender people. The draft roll — which is the voter list used by the poll panel in the 2014 assembly election — of around 7 million voters was published in September, after which election authorities started a special summary revision (SSR) drive to add names.
“We will see from where they added 7.72 lakh (772,000) new voters and who are they. If they are J&K residents, we don’t have any problem but certainly we won’t allow non-locals and who are not in the population register of J&K to be part of the list,” People’s Alliance for Gupkar Declaration spokesperson and Communist Party of India (Marxist) leader MY Tarigami said.
The Jammu and Kashmir Congress echoed a similar view. “Our apprehension is that some non-eligible voters have been added from outside Jammu and Kashmir,” Jammu and Kashmir Congress chief spokesperson Ravinder Sharma said on Friday.
The BJP defended the net addition to the electoral roll, stating that the Election Commission carried out a transparent process.
“When special summary revision of electoral rolls started, they [the Oppoistion] accused the BJP of influencing EC to change the demography by adding 25 lakh [2.5 million] new voters. A completely transparent exercise was conducted by election officials including door-to-door visit and proper verification of documents, ” former deputy chief minister and senior BJP leader Kavinder Gupta said.
National Conference (NC) spokesperson Tanvir Sadiq they were studying the details of those who were added to the electoral roll and added that it was now time to hold elections in the region.
“How long will the people of Jammu and Kashmir be deprived of a representative, responsive government? So, this is the first and foremost that the EC should come out and state about how soon will they hold elections in Jammu and Kashmir,” he said.