In a move to change history of Jammu and Kashmir Civic Polls, the Bharatiya Janata Party has swept clean victory taking control of Seven Municipal Committees in Kashmir Valley unopposed in the elections. Keeping up its promise of sweeping victory in every part of India, BJP has marked its words.
At least 60 candidates of the BJP have won their seats unopposed, and a majority of them fall in the volatile region of south Kashmir where, out of 20 municipalities in five districts, only four are likely to go to polls. The municipalities which are likely to be headed by BJP candidates are Devsar, Qazigund, Pahalgam, and Ashmuqam in south Kashmir, and Shopian and Sopore towns of north Kashmir.
“We have 350 candidates contesting in 600 municipal wards spread across 10 districts of the Valley. Our 60 candidates have won without fighting the elections. Out of them, six are Kashmiri Pandits,” Altaf Thakur, the BJP’s spokesperson in Srinagar said.
Thakur also added, “After the first phase of nominations for elections was over, the rush of the candidates increased. We had to select among dozens of candidates. People have reposed faith in democracy and we will live up to their expectations”.
The municipal polls will be held in four phases across Jammu and Kashmir on 8, 10, 13 and 16 October in which 16,97,291 electors are eligible to vote in around 1,145 wards.
The biggest militant organisation in the Valley, Hizbul Mujahideen, has threatened to carry out acid attacks against people who contest in the elections and those who file nomination papers. Without taking any risk, many candidates, particularly from south Kashmir, were put up in hotels in Srinagar, the capital, by the state administration.
Without fearing the constitution, the Congress is said to be accepting candidates who were previously engaged into terror activities in Kashmir. According to Congress, who have given up with arms are now free of sins and can now serve the people without guilt! A few of the tactics by Congress are just not possible to be digested.
The state government also announced recently that the candidates, who will contest the municipal and Panchayat polls, will be covered under an attractive life insurance policy.
Out of the 78 uncontested wards, 30 fall in southern Kashmir, the epicentre of the ongoing crisis in Kashmir following the killing of Hizbul Mujahideen commander Burhan Wani, while 24 wards are in central Kashmir and 15 in north Kashmir. There are a total of 79 municipal bodies in Jammu and Kashmir, which include two municipal corporations, six municipal councils and 71 municipal committees.
“These elections are the first step for restoring the rule of law, bringing governance at the doorsteps of the people and strengthening democracy at the grassroots level. With our party set to emerge victorious, Jammu and Kashmir will see a new era of development,” Thakur said.