SRINAGAR — In a revelation that has stirred anticipation, a report by the news agency KNS on Saturday claimed that the much-anticipated Assembly elections in Jammu and Kashmir are unlikely to take place in 2024.
Dispelling any lingering expectations, the sources quoted by the news agency cited a tight schedule this year, marked by the upcoming Parliamentary elections and the subsequent annual Amarnath Yatra, typically spanning two months.
Authorities are reportedly grappling with logistical challenges and are unlikely to concentrate on local elections in the midst of these significant events.
“There are bleak chances of Assembly elections in 2024,” the sources affirmed, dismissing rumours. They emphasized that the simultaneous conduct of Parliamentary and Assembly polls poses challenges requiring substantial manpower and time for smooth execution.
“If Parliamentary elections are held in mid-2024, the Urban Local Bodies (ULB) polls may be scheduled for September, following the conclusion of the annual Amarnath Yatra,” the sources suggested.
In the unfolding scenario, authorities are said to be considering the possibility of Panchayat, BDC, and DDC polls later in the year, potentially in October and November 2024. The Central government’s priority, according to the sources, is the smooth conduct of Parliamentary elections, making the simultaneous holding of other elections a logistical challenge.
Amidst the uncertainty, regional and national mainstream political parties have intensified public outreach programs across Jammu and Kashmir in preparation for the impending Parliamentary polls, likely to take place in April-May this year.
While local political parties are optimistic about Assembly elections occurring in 2024, the sources underscored the challenges faced by authorities in aligning the schedules of various elections.
It’s worth noting that a five-member bench of the Supreme Court, headed by Chief Justice DY Chandruchud, had previously directed the Election Commission of India to conduct Assembly elections in Jammu and Kashmir before September 30, 2024.