Derecognise parties boycotting local body polls in J&K: BJP

Electronic Voting Machines
Several parties have called for a boycott of the impending local body elections: File photo

Jammu: The Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) on Saturday demanded that all mainstream political parties boycotting the municipal and panchayat polls in Jammu and Kashmir should be de-recognised.

Speaking to the media here, BJP spokesman Brigadier (retired) Anil Gupta said: "State's chief electoral officer should de-recognise those political parties who have announced boycott of urban local bodies and panchayat polls.

"National Conference (NC), Peoples Democratic Party (PDP), Communist Party of India-Marxist (CPI-M) and Bahujan Samaj Party (BSP) are both state and national level parties with reserved election symbols.

"These parties are mandated to participate in all elections, according to Section 29A(5) of the Representation of People Act, 1951."

Elections are the core of the democratic process and afford people an opportunity to express their will, Gupta said.

"By boycotting the elections, these political parties have not only betrayed the people of the state but also disrespected the Constitution which they had pledged to safeguard while applying for recognition of their political parties."

Suppression of the democratic process by these parties also amounts to gross violation of human rights, the BJP leader noted.

"The chief electoral officer should immediately take up the issue with the Election Commission of India to de-recognize these parties and freeze their election symbols," he said.

Polling for the first phase of municipal elections begins on October 8, while panchayat polls are scheduled to be completed in November-December this year in the state.

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