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Congress indecisive over participation in civic polls

Srinagar, Sep 12: The state unit of Congress is indecisive about its participation in the upcoming Panchayat and Municipal polls, while a delegation is being sent to New Delhi to reach to a decision.
Addressing a press conference here at the party headquarters here, the State Congress President, G A Mir, accused New Delhi of creating “uncertainty” over the polls.
“There is a lot of confusion about the Panchayat and Urban Local Body polls. So, we are sending a delegation of our senior leaders to brief the party high command over the situation and to accordingly decide on our participation,” he said.
The State Congress head said the situation in the state was not “conducive” for holding of the elections.
“The Panchayat and Municipal polls were declared in the state without taking a stock of the situation on the ground. By election we mean an exercise similar to the one held in 2011 and 2014, not like 2017 during which many lost lives and the poll percentage was too low,” he said.
“Everyone who has to participate in the election has to go through many barriers. Neither the state government nor the centre or the Election Commission of India is discussing their responsibilities.”
He said New Delhi and state administration should make clear their stand about the elections.
“They should clear whether they want to conduct the elections or is it just a gimmick,” he said, suggesting involving a “credible person” for gaining people’s confidence.
“Once the confusion is clear, the Congress party will decide whether or not to participate in the elections,” he said.
Divulging about their Tuesday’s meeting with Governor Satya Pal Malik, on current situation in the valley, Mir said, “The Governor was only testing waters and was not serious on the issue.”
“We met Governor twice in last 10 days and yesterday we briefed them about current situation and raise question about preparation for elections. These concerns were not addressed,” he said.
Asked about the poll boycott announced by National Conference and Peoples Democratic Party (PDP), he said, “Every party had its own opinion.”
“However, linking Panchayat and ULB polls with hearing on Article 35 -A in Supreme Court is very wrong,” Mir said.