PDP to boycott Kashmir panchayat polls

Sunday, December 5, 2010

JAMMU - The main opposition Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) announced Sunday that it will boycott panchayat elections to be held on a non-party basis in Jammu and Kashmir in January 2011, saying the “conditions are not conducive”.

PDP president Mehbooba Mufti, addressing a meeting of party workers in Jammu, said: The conditions are not conducive for holding of panchayat polls, hence PDP will oppose the polls.

Mehbooba Mufti, who represents the largest opposition group both within and outside of the state legislature, said the government had not taken into consideration the ground realities and is moving ahead with the panchayat polls in a bid to run over the public mood”.

She was referring to around 110 killings in the past five months in the Kashmir Valley due to clashes between stone throwers and police and security forces.

Chief Minister Omar Abdullah had announced Tuesday the holding of panchayat polls on non-party basis from January. According to him, the panchayat elections, which have not been held for the past seven years, would help in devolution of power to the grassroots level in Jammu and Kashmir.

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