Kashmir, 18th August 2022: Jammu and Kashmir Chief Electoral Officer (CEO) Hirdesh Kumar announced that the commission has also given voting rights to people outside Kashmir. These will include employees, students, labourers or persons from other states of the country who are ordinarily residing in Jammu and Kashmir. They can enrol their name on the voter list.

According to media reports, he said that domicile is not required to enlist outsiders as voters. He also said that the Armed Forces personnel from other states posted in J&K can add their names to the voter list.

The Election Commissioner clarified that there is no bar for non-locals to vote. “It doesn’t matter how long someone has been living in Jammu and Kashmir. The final decision on whether the non-local is living in Jammu and Kashmir will be taken by the ERO. Even those living on rent can vote.

He said that the only condition to be included in the voter list is that the person has cancelled his voter registration from his native state. With this decision of the commission, about 20 to 25 lakh new voters will be included in the voter list.

PDP chief Mehbooba Mufti has targeted the central government on this decision of the Election Commissioner. She said, “First the decision of the Indian government to postpone the elections in Jammu and Kashmir and now to allow non-local people to vote, it is a sign of influencing the election results in favour of the BJP.” The real objective is to continue to rule J&K strictly to power down the local people.

After the implementation of the Delimitation Commission report in Jammu and Kashmir, the number of assembly seats has increased to 90. With the increase in the number of assembly seats, there has been a drastic change in the existing electoral rolls. Now, the voter list is being prepared according to the new structure.

The process of preparation of the voter list is going on all over Jammu and Kashmir. However, it was put on hold given the preparations for August 15 in Jammu and Kashmir. Earlier, October 31 was the deadline for publication of the final voter list but is now extended to 25 days.

According to media reports, “New polling stations are being built in Jammu and Kashmir, and the number of polling stations has gone up to 11,370.” Camps will be organized in Jammu and Kashmir during the Summary Revision from September 15 to October 25, where people can register themselves as voters.

The names on the voter list will be added through the Aadhar card. According to the report, from October 1, 2022, people who are 18 years or more can get their names included in the voter list.