New Delhi, February 18:
About six months after the State of Jammu and Kashmir was split into the Union Territories of J&K and Ladakh, the government moved on Monday to start the delimitation of Assembly constituencies in J&K.
On a request by the Department of Legislative Affairs of the Ministry of Law and Justice, Chief Election Commissioner Sunil Arora on Monday named Election Commissioner Sushil Chandra as his nominee to the proposed Delimitation Commission for Jammu and Kashmir, an EC spokesperson said.
As per the Jammu and Kashmir Reorganisation Act, 2019, which was passed by Parliament on August 5 last year and came into effect on October 31, the Union Territory of J&K will have an Assembly, while Ladakh will not. The Act further said the number of seats in the Assembly of J&K would be increased from 107 to 114 after delimitation, on the basis of the 2011 Census.
An official of the Commission said the EC was ready to provide secretarial assistance to the Commission once appointed, as it is required to do.
The EC had held a meeting in August 2019 to discuss the delimitation process and enrolled two officials who had worked on previous delimitation exercises, sources said. Mr. Arora had then said that the EC was ready when the government was.
According to the Delimitation Commission Act, 2002, the Delimitation Commission appointed by the Centre has to have three members: a serving or retired judge of the Supreme Court as the chairperson, and the Chief Election Commissioner or Election Commissioner nominated by the CEC and the State Election Commissioner as ex-officio members.