The Home Minister Amit Shah has made it clear and has promised as well on the floor of the Parliament when the bill for the abrogation of Article 370 was being presented that the elections would be held in J&K and its statehood too would be restored. However, there has been a disagreement on the sequence of events which was described by the Home Minister. After the meeting of political leaders of J&K with PM Narendra Modi, for the first time after August 5, 2019, the HM said that there would be first, delimitation, then the elections will be held and then the statehood would be restored.
However, there has been quite a debate and disagreement on it, particularly from the Valley political parties that have been, in a way, seeking a change in sequence. They have been pitching for the restoration of statehood before the elections. But that doesn’t seem to be changing, as the first step has been completed and now all eyes are on the next step, assembly elections, for which the political parties in J&K already seem to be preparing and the same was projected in what former chief minister Omar Abdullah said on how the PAGD—which doesn’t seem to exist—should fight the elections jointly.
Coming to the report of the delimitation commission, there has been a scarce acceptable and the same has been rejected and criticised by the political parties. However, there is no possibility of undoing what has now been made final—which is something the leaders of various political parties also know and have made peace with.
In the end, now, the ball is in the court of the Government which has got no excuse for delaying the conduct of assembly elections in J&K. The political parties might be having their reservations, but announcing the dates for the elections might end up giving life to the political activities and engagement across J&K. The time is now to jump to the next step.