Srinagar, Sep 16 : Notwithstanding the poll boycott announced by two major regional mainstream parties, the National Conference and the Peoples Democratic Party in the state, the Chief Electoral Officer Shaleen Kabra has announced that the Jammu and Kashmir panchayat polls will be held in held in 9 phases between November 17 and December 11.
The polling will be held on November 17, 20, 24, 27, 29, December 1, 4, 8 and 11. Kabra informed that votes will be cast using ballot paper and that counting of votes will take place on the day of polling.
The announcement comes days after Jammu and Kashmir Chief Secretary BVR Subrahmanyam denied reports that the upcoming elections are likely to be deferred.
The elections to urban local bodies will be held in Jammu and Kashmir in four phases beginning on October 8, said a senior State Election Commission officer.
The SEC has announced that a four-phase municipal election would be held from October 8. “We shall be holding the municipal elections first and then the panchayat elections. The polling for four phases will be held on October 8, 10, 13 and 16,” the state’s Chief Electoral Officer Shaleen Kabra told reporters.
“These polls will start on October 8. Notification for phase 1 will be issued on September 18. The notifications for phase 2, 3 and 4 will be issued on September 20, 22 and 24, respectively.
“17 lakh voters are registered for the polls,” Kabra said.
With this announcement, all speculations about the deferment of these polls have been laid to rest.
The last municipal elections in the state were held in January 2005 after a gap of 23 years. The civic polls could not be conducted since 2011 due to security concerns.
On the other hand, the Congress Party has said the situation is not conducive for holding these polls around this time.
Separatists have asked people to boycott both municipal and Panchayat polls in the state.