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News18 » India
1-min read

EC Went Against Home Ministry Advisory to Hold Srinagar Bypoll

Turnout of stonepelters at encounter sites in favour of terrorists also gave clear indications that radicalisation and seperatism was peeking in the valley.

Arunima | CNN-News18Arunima24

Updated:April 10, 2017, 9:24 PM IST
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Polling staff checking EVMs in Srinagar
Polling staff checking EVMs before heading to polling station for by-election to the Srinagar Lok Sabha seat, in Srinagar on Saturday. (Photo: PTI)

New Delhi: A day after Srinagar recorded its worst voter turnout in three decades, union home ministry has blamed the Election Commission for holding the bypoll at an importune moment.

Top sources in MHA told CNN-News18 that union home secretary Rajiv Mehrishi had personally written a letter to EC that bypolls should be postponed as ground situation in Kashmir is not conducive for any democratic process.

Intelligence bureau reports based on which MHA wrote to EC had said that there is a groundswell of opinion against mainstream political parties and Indian government.

Turnout of stonepelters at encounter sites in favour of terrorists also gave clear indications that radicalisation and separatism was on the ascendancy in the valley.

"EC over ruled MHA's reservations and went ahead. The results are for all to see,' a source told CNN-News18.

Reacting to the news that MHA had opposed holding of bypolls in April, ECI said that they are not bound to consult or follow home ministry.

An ECI source said, "It was a constitutional obligation to hold the elections. In the assessment of ECI, if prevailing conditions were conducive for holding of Panchayat elections by the state government then holding of parliamentary elections is also possible."

Only 6.5% voters turned out in Srinagar even when former chief minister Farooq Abdullah was in a direct fight with the ruling PDP.

Violence lead to eight deaths; and Anantnag, which goes to polls on Wednesday, saw schools being burnt in Shopian and Anantnag. These schools were to function as election centers.

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| Edited by: Nakshab Khan
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