Article 370 gone: EC gets set to undertake delimitation in J&K
New Delhi, Aug 24: The delimitation exercise that had been stalled for years together is all set to begin. It would take at least 14 months to complete and the Election Commission would execute the process in around 10 phases.
The EC is now awaiting an official nod from the Union Home Ministry. The EC is said to have prepared its report on the basis of its experience in Uttarakhand in 2000-2001 says a report by news18.
Earlier this month the ECI had met to discuss the delimitation of assembly seats in Jammu and Kashmir. This was the first meeting of the Election Commission to discuss the delimitation of Vidhan Sabha seats in Jammu and Kashmir.
This exercise was made possible after the abrogation of Article 370. Once the scrapping of Article 370 was done, it was decided that the next step would be the delimitation of seats.
Political parties have been not only been opposing the scrapping of Article 370, but the delimitation exercise as well. Once this exercise takes place, then the seats would increase from 107 to 114.
Further reservation would also be introduced.
Delimitation commissions have been constituted in 1963, 1973 and 2002. While the commission submitted its recommendations in 2007, the same was kept in the cold storage until the Supreme Court intervened and the recommendation accepted in 2008.
According to the 2011 census, the population of Jammu division was around 54 lakh, while that of Kashmir was 68.8 lakh. The Jammu and Kashmir divisions have 37 and 46 seats respectively in the legislative assembly. There are 4 seats from Ladakh.
It may be recalled that in 2002, Farooq Abdullah as chief minister arbitrarily amended the state's constitution to prevent any delimitation exercise until 2026.
Now with the state constitution ceasing to exist, the delimitation exercise can be carried out.