Kashmir: Jammu and Kashmir Lt Governor Girish Chandra Murmu on Thursday said election for the assembly of J&K Union Territory would be held soon. He was speaking at police passing out parade at Talwara in Reasi. “Union Territory of J&K has an assembly for which elections will be held soon. The election process has begun,” Murmu said.

Highlighting the role of police in the electoral process in Jammu and Kashmir, he said, “Police will have an important role to play in upcoming elections.” It was Murmu’s first public speech after assuming office as the first Lieutenant Governor of Jammu and Kashmir on October 31.

The erstwhile state of Jammu and Kashmir was split into two union territories after the historic decision by the BJP government. In the new arrangement, J&K UT can elect a legislative assembly and a Chief Minister unlike Ladakh, which won’t have an assembly.

After the abrogation of Article 370, most political leaders of Kashmir including three former Chief Ministers — Farooq Abdullah, Omar Abdullah and Mehbooba Mufti — have been detained since August 5. Dozens of leaders from different Kashmir-based political parties have also been detained at the Centaur Hotel on the banks of Dal Lake.

Authorities have started the process of filling the political vacuum in J&K after the scrapping of Article 370 but without much success.

Zaffar Iqbal

Zaffar Iqbal is a senior journalist from Jammu and Kashmir. In a career spanning 20 years, he has reported on a wide range of issues ranging from conflict, armed encounters, environment, crime, politics culture and human rights. Zafar has worked as bureau chief (J&K)/ North India for NDTV- (New Delhi Television and Tiranga TV)- leading teams of journalists for producing quality TV news and online video content.

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