Jammu, April 18 — Divisional Commissioner Jammu, Dr. Pawan Kotwal today chaired a meeting to review the arrangements made for Kashmiri migrant voters of Srinagar Anantnag and Baramulla Constituencies for the upcoming Lok Sabha elections
The meeting was attended by District Election Officer Jammu (DEO) Dr Mandeep .K.Bhandari, DEO Udhampur.Ajay Khajuria, Relief Commissioner (Migrants) and other officers .As per the notification issued by the Election Commission of India Anantnag constituency would go for polls on 30 April, Srinagar on May, 07 and Baramulla on May, 13. Besides the by elections to Hazratbal and Sonawar Assembly segments is also slated on May 07.
While apprising the Divisional Commissioner about the arrangements made the Relief Commissioner informed the meeting that forms M and form 12C are being issued free of cost to the migrants voters and made available in the offices of concerned Zonal offices and Camp Commandants of the Relief Organization which are required to be deposited with the concerned Zonal officers ten days before the date of polling .All the eligible migrants who wish to exercise their franchise at the 12 polling stations notified for the purpose in Jammu and one at Udhampur will have to fill Form M indicating their the option of the polling stations where they wish to cast their votes, the meeting was informed .
ARO (Migrant) informed the meeting that the voters intending to vote through postal ballots need to fill up Form 12C for issuance of postal ballot papers in their favour. He said that Form 12C is needed to be dropped in the special letter box installed by the Postal authorities in the office of ARO (Migrant) in Relief Commissioner Office Jammu. It was further informed that Form M and 12C are required to be deposited ten days before the polling date to enable the ARO and District Election Officer for processing the application.
The meeting stressed on the need to ensure better coordination so that migrant voters do not face any inconvenience while casting their votes. The meeting was informed that teams for inspecting the polling stations stand constituted and other arrangements finalized for smooth conduct of elections. Further security arrangements and other issues related to elections like deployment of sectoral and zonal magistrates, communication and transport plan were also discussed during the meeting and necessary instruction in this behalf were given to the concerned.
Meanwhile several Kashmiri Pandit organizations have alleged that sharp decline in the number of community voters was being manipulated under a conspiracy. Explaining it senior All State Kashmiri Pandit Conference,H.L.Chatha, today said that the number of voters for the Srinagar Lok Sabha constituency has kept on dwindling since the 1990 migration.He said the number of Pandit voters in several Assembly and Lok Sabha constituencies should have been more than what it was in 1990.Citing an instance Chatha said that the Election commission record reveals that the number of Pandit voters in Srinagar had gone down from 45,0000 to over 27,000 which is unimaginable.
He said during the Assembly election held in November last he had made a consistent effort to register those whose name had not been enrolled in the voters list.He added that surprisingly that all these names do not figure in the revised electoral rolls.Chatha blamed the Election Commission for having made registration of Pandit voters a cumbersome process.He said that "we are being told to secure M form and later get this form attested by a concerned authority and so and so forth,” adding that migrants, who have been living a difficult circumstances during the last 20 yars,were not prepared to bear the odds for getting their names registered. More read at www.scoopnews.in