BDC elections a sham exercise
Jammu, October 10: Dubbing the ensuing BDC elections in J&K following its down gradation to UT as ‘sham exercise’, Harsh Dev Singh JKNPP Chairman and former Minister went hammer and tongs against BJP accusing it of monopolizing all political activity in J&K to impose its political hegemony. “Announcement of polls while keeping the nationalist opposition leaders under detention itself showcased that BJP not only held the democracy hostage for its political expediencies but turned frenzied in the quest of grabbing all BDC seats by hook or by crook”. He was addressing a press conference in Jammu today.
Addressing the media, Harsh Dev Singh regretted that the election authorities had made a contemptuous mockery of the electoral process by issuing notification of BDC elections on Oct 1st and setting Oct 9th as the last date for filing nominations. Such a short span not only posed an inconvenience for the political parties to issue authority letters/mandates to their candidates living in far-flung and remote areas but the four holidays in between caused grave hindrance to the Panches and Sarpanches of opposition parties in procuring necessary documents required for filing the nomination papers.
“While the BJP did its homework by unfair means in the last two months of undeclared emergency, other parties were forced to complete all cumbersome formalities in just 5 days. Seemingly, the Saffron party after assuming power at the Centre has been manoeuvring all the democratic institutions including the ECI at its whims and fancies”, Harsh rued. He maintained that in the wake of various mainstream political parties including Congress, NC and PDP announcing to boycott the said polls, the BJP was deliriously feeling over the moon with no idea that it would be only Panthers which could shatter its fascist intentions. He, however, regretted that despite best efforts, the NPP could manage to reach only around 23 Blocks out of 310 Blocks in view of paucity of time and detention of its party leadership for 58 days.
Taking a further dig at BJP, Harsh Dev Singh asserted that as per the prevalent practice and precedents, the opposition parties needed to be consulted and taken into confidence while taking any decision with regard to any elections. Not only the said precedent was disregarded but the Government chose to go ahead with the said polls amidst politics of coercion, intimidation, detentions and persecutions of the nationalist opposition leaders. The BJP wanted to jump into an electoral fray unopposed which could most aptly be described as “I versus Myself”, asserted Harsh.
He lamented that liberal democracy which was the hallmark of the Indian constitution had been taken over by pseudo-democracy in the present authoritarian regime has no place for political dissent. Lambasting the ruling dispensation for trampling the very essence of democracy, Singh described the govt move as tyrannical, totalitarian and bizarre. “Has the much-hyped slogan of ECI for providing level playing field to all the political parties deflated? Is it not the desecration of the Indian Constitution which guaranteed rule of law and level playing field to all Will ‘opposition-less’ election not defeat the purpose of the second tier of Panchayati Raj system in J&K? questioned Harsh.
Asserting that the massive mandate to BJP in Lok Sabha elections was being used by the party to extinguish the democratic chatter in the State, Mr. Harsh Dev Singh once again urged the President of India and the ECI for their immediate intervention to save the rule of law in the state which has been ripped apart by the dictatorial political moves of the present regime.
Gagan Partap Singh State Secretary JKNPP was also present in the press conference.