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Updated March 2nd, 2024 at 16:08 IST

BJP Eyes Third Consecutive Term in Ladakh as Lok Sabha Elections Approach

PM Narendra Modi or Home Minister Amit Shah is expected to visit Ladakh before the Election Commission of India (ECI) imposes the Model Code of Conduct

BJP Eyes Third Consecutive Term in Ladakh as Lok Sabha Elections Approach
BJP Eyes Third Consecutive Term in Ladakh as Lok Sabha Elections Approach | Image:PTI
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Lok Sabha Polls 2024 News Ladakh: With the Lok Sabha elections drawing nearer, Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) is intensifying its efforts to secure a third consecutive term, particularly in Ladakh, the recently designated Union Territory.

Anticipation is high as Ladakh expects an important visit from either Prime Minister Narendra Modi or Home Minister Amit Shah before the Election Commission of India (ECI) imposes the Model Code of Conduct (MCC).

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Having clinched victory in the past two consecutive terms in 2014 and 2019, the BJP is leaving no stone unturned to connect with voters and promote its development agenda. Sources suggest that “a colossal rally is expected, where the party's high-profile leader will address the crowd and inaugurate various infrastructure projects aimed at catalyzing the development of the Union Territory and reinforcing the border road network,”.

In addition to these initiatives, there are proposals to establish new administrative units, including two districts-Zanskar and Nubra. Plans are also underway to empower the Autonomous Hill Development Councils in Leh and Kargil.

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Furthermore, the Union Home Ministry is engaged in discussions with the Leh Apex Body (LAB) and Kargil Democratic Alliance (KDA) to address Ladakh's concerns and aspirations.

A Sub Committee has been formed, which is expected to make announcements regarding the Public Services Commission (PSC) and the implementation of select aspects of the Sixth Schedule, potentially benefiting the region. The Sub Committee is set to convene in New Delhi on March 4, marking the third interaction between the parties this year. LAB and KDA have been advocating for Ladakh's interests, presenting a comprehensive four-point agenda including demands for statehood, Sixth Schedule status, a dedicated PSC, and the allocation of two parliamentary seats.

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However, acknowledging the logistical constraints posed by the freeze on constituency delimitation until 2026, the demand for two parliamentary seats has been shelved for now. However, discussions remain focused on addressing Ladakh's broader concerns and aspirations.

Meanwhile, the National Conference (NC) has announced its intention to hold further discussions with the Congress regarding seat allocation in the upcoming elections. With just three parliamentary constituencies in Kashmir under their control, the focus is now on negotiations for the remaining three seats in Jammu, Udhampur and Ladakh.

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“Despite the challenges and complexities involved, there is optimism that a consensus will be reached among the coalition partners,” says Omar Abdullah.

 In Jammu and Kashmir, the alliance between NC, Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) and Congress forms part of the INDIA bloc, albeit facing internal discord and challenging negotiations over seat-sharing arrangements at the national level.

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Published March 2nd, 2024 at 16:08 IST

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