Chief Election Commissioner Sunil Arora on Tuesday said that the commission had discussions with top officials over conducting simultaneous Assembly and Lok Sabha polls in Jammu and Kashmir and the EC will inform about the decision at a press conference in Delhi.
The CEC’s remarks came after EC finished its two-day visit to Jammu and Kashmir today. Political parties in the Valley made a pitch for holding simultaneous elections in the state, as soon as the commission began its visit on Monday.
The team, headed by Arora, reached Jammu on the second leg of the two-day tour and held discussions with the representatives of various political parties, including the BJP, Congress, National Conference, PDP, CPI(M) and the National Panthers Party (NPP), officials were quoted as saying by PTI.
A similar exercise was conducted by the Election Commission of India (ECI) in Srinagar on Monday as part of its efforts to assess the feasibility of holding the Lok Sabha and the assembly polls together.
“Commission had discussions with J&K Chief Secretary, DGP, Union Home Secretary, and all political parties. We’ll consider everything and inform about the decision at a press conference in Delhi,” he was quoted as saying by ANI on Tuesday.
The top election official, who was addressing a press conference in Jammu today, also said that it was unfortunate that some parties were expressing apprehension over the functioning of EVMs.
“We have been using EVMs for more than 2 decades, very strange even if you take from 2014 onwards, there was a LS poll in Delhi, there was X result, some political entity won. Then in Delhi Assembly polls, another political entity won with heavy margin,” the CEC said.
Arora added that the credibility of the machines must not be doubted as it is “we” who vote not the EVMs. “Sorry to say we have made EVMs a football, if result is X, EVM is good if result is Y EVM is not good as if EVM is voting. It’s you&I who are voting, so no point in going over this again,” he said.