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People who have resided in Jammu for more than 1 year can register as voters, says order issued by the administration

The decision was taken to ensure that no eligible voter is left for registration in the ongoing special summary revision of electoral rolls.

On Tuesday, the Deputy Commissioner of Jammu issued an order authorizing all tehsildars (revenue officers) to give residence certificates to anybody who has stayed in the district for more than a year. According to the directive, the decision has been taken to guarantee that no eligible voter is left out of the ongoing special summary review of electoral records.

This is the first time that the electoral revision has been undertaken after the removal of Article 370 in 2019. According to the reports, any document, including the Aadhar Card, water, electricity, gas connection, bank passbooks, passports, and registered land titles can be utilized as proof of residency.

The order also states that the special review revision is intended for new voter registration as well as the deletion, correction, and transposition of voters who have relocated or died after the last summary review in Jammu and Kashmir.

The regulation however has faced opposition from several political parties including JKNC, JKPC, and PDP. In response to the order, the Jammu and Kashmir National Conference’s (JKNC) official Twitter feed stated that the party rejects the government’s decision. It continued to state that the BJP is terrified of the elections and knows it will lose heavily.

“The Government is going ahead with its plan to add 25 lakh, non-local voters, in Jammu and Kashmir and we continue to oppose this move. BJP is scared of the elections and knows it will lose badly. People of Jammu and Kashmir must defeat these conspiracies at the ballot box”, JKNC tweeted.

Jammu and Kashmir People’s Conference (JKPC) also criticized the directive and said, “the latest order by DC Jammu authorizing revenue officials to issue a certificate of residence to outsiders residing in Jammu for more than one year is highly suspicious aimed at enabling them to vote. This goes against the SC judgment on the issue”. JKPC also demanded the Election Commission of India look into the case and clarify further if such a directive is permissible.

Meanwhile, PDP chief Mehbooba Mufti criticized the directive. “This means that the value of the vote of a J&K voter will be finished. This law is not applied anywhere in the country except Jammu and Kashmir”, she said.

Earlier, chief election officer Hirdesh Kumar had stated that Jammu and Kashmir would receive roughly 25 lakh extra voters, including outsiders, as a result of the special summary review of electoral records. Except for the BJP then, almost all political parties were upset by the inclusion of non-locals as voters and had flocked to the streets to protest.

The government later stated that the revision of electoral records would encompass current inhabitants of the Union Territory of Jammu and Kashmir, and the rise in numbers will be of voters who have reached the age of 18 as of October 1, 2022, or earlier.

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OpIndia Staff
OpIndia Staff
Staff reporter at OpIndia

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