Preparations for Delimitation of Municipal Bodies Begin in Jammu and Kashmir, Elections Likely by Year-End

Preparations for Delimitation of Municipal Bodies Begin in Jammu and Kashmir, Elections Likely by Year-End

Srinagar, Jun 26: As proposed assembly elections in Jammu and Kashmir approach, preparations for municipal elections have also commenced. The state is gearing up for fresh delimitation in its municipal bodies, with the State Election Commissioner instructing deputy commissioners from all twenty districts to actively participate in the delimitation process and provide their suggestions and proposals. Municipal elections are anticipated to be held by the end of the year.

As per the news agency—Kashmir News Observer (KNO) correspondent, State Election Commissioner BR Sharma held a one-and-a-half-hour meeting via video conference with the Deputy Commissioners on Tuesday evening to discuss the civic election process. The primary focus of the meeting was on delimitation, which will see the expansion of many municipal bodies. These upcoming civic elections will be the first since Jammu and Kashmir was reconstituted as a Union Territory.

In 2018, the last time municipal elections were held, Jammu and Kashmir was a full state. However, following its reorganization in 2019, municipal elections were postponed. The terms of the municipal bodies ended in November 2023. Jammu district, for example, comprises 75 wards, including the Jammu Municipal Corporation (JMC) and several municipalities such as Arnia, Akhnoor, Bishnah, Gho Manhasa, Jyodiyan, Khod, and RS Pura.

OBC Reservation Implementation

For the first time, Other Backward Classes (OBC) reservations may be implemented in the upcoming municipal elections in Jammu and Kashmir. Previously, there was no provision for OBC reservation in these elections. The delay in holding the elections last year was due to the process of ensuring an OBC reservation system. On December 28, 2023, the Jammu and Kashmir Administrative Council amended the Jammu and Kashmir Panchayati Raj Act, allowing for OBC reservations in urban and rural local bodies—(KNO)

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