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Panchayat elections to be held in Sept-Oct: Report

Srinagar, July 29: More than 500 sarpanches and local representatives from across Jammu and Kashmir attended one-day panchayats convention that was held in Srinagar on July 28. The meeting was called regarding panchayat elections in the state. According to a report published in India Today, sarpanches wanted to have elections at the earliest because since the last two years. Panchayat polls have not taken place in Jammu and Kashmir.

The report citing to government sources published the panchayat polls are likely to be conducted after the Amarnath Yatra. The polls for local bodies may be held in September-October. All Jammu and Kashmir Panchayat Conference (AJKPC) said that their participation in upcoming panchayat polls would be apolitical.

AJKPC demanded that democracy should be started on the ground. AJKPC Chairman Shafiq Mir during the conference also raised the issue of deaths of panches and sarpanches in the last few years. The conference claimed that since last five years, more than 15 sarpanches had been killed.

Mir said that the killings of the officials of local bodies were a result of a misunderstanding. “We have to address the local issue through panchayat election. We can get thousands crore rupee for local development through Panchayati Raj institution,” reported India Today quoting Mir as saying. AJKPC also wanted to have a robust Panchayat Act.