We Can’t Demand Good Governance and Keep Away from Elections – Kashmir Observer

We Can’t Demand Good Governance and Keep Away from Elections – Kashmir Observer

KO File Photograph by Abid Bhat

Over the previous few years, the well being of democracy has declined considerably in many countries. The idea of electoral democracy, additionally known as consultant democracy, continues to thrive. In a lot of the democratic nations, particularly India, folks elect their representatives after each 5 years they usually signify them in numerous boards like nationwide assemblies, parliament, state or provincial assemblies and even at native degree like City Native Our bodies and Panchayati Raj Establishments PRIs.  The passion for electoral democracy has slipped in many countries and other people really feel good individuals are not going to parliament or state assemblies.

I personally consider that the fault lies inside the residents themselves, particularly in Jammu & Kashmir who don’t take part within the electoral course of actively. Then again, we would like higher companies from the Authorities like good roads, sturdy  healthcare, 24 x 7 electrical energy provide and higher schooling and corruption free companies and so forth. How is all this attainable once we don’t elect higher leaders?

Irony is that even in Municipal elections folks don’t vote for good folks nor educated and public spirited folks come ahead to take part within the electoral course of ?  Allow us to analyse the Srinagar Municipal Company elections within the final 10 to fifteen years. Did we ever elect good individuals who might signify our aspirations?

The Sensible Metropolis Srinagar plan was thrusted on folks which in any other case ought to have been put ahead by the SMC corporators. The work was taken up haphazardly and these corporators didn’t even utter a phrase. The rationale was that they weren’t elected by the overwhelming majority of individuals. They didn’t signify the aspirations of the folks. Some have been elected with mere 50 to 60 votes and lots of didn’t even get 300 votes. 

I do know some councillors and corporators who received elected by their very own household votes ( 1 to 4 votes solely).  Similar is the case with the final Panchayat elections and a overwhelming majority of Sarpanches have been chosen and never elected in any respect. Many of those Sarpanches and Panches looted public funds and have become contractors reasonably than representing their very own folks.

Lok Sabha election 2014 and 2019

For a lot of many years now, folks of J&Okay have been boycotting elections particularly in Srinagar metropolis.  There have been many well-known political causes for that. 

The election boycott helped many individuals rule J&Okay however I consider this Lok Sabha election is the suitable time to ship our true representatives to Parliament.  It’s stunning to know that the final two Lok Sabha elections (2014 and 2019)  noticed lower than 50% participation of individuals in J&Okay. With regards to Srinagar, Anantnag and Baramulla Lok sabha segments, the participation of individuals was not very much less.  

In 2014 lok sabha elections, a mere 25 % folks voted in Srinagar parliamentary seat, 39 % votes have been polled in Baramulla and 28% voters solid their votes in Anantnag parliamentary constituency. Quite the opposite, 71% votes have been polled in Ladakh,  Udhampur recorded 70.95% turnout and in Jammu lok sabha 68% voters solid their votes.  

In 2019 Lok Sabha elections, the polling proportion additional got here down as mere 9% voters solid their votes in Anantnag lok sabha section , Srinagar recorded mere 15% votes and Baramulla was a bit larger with round 38% polling. Quite the opposite,  Jammu  Lok Sabha Section noticed 80% plus voting, Udhampur 79.7% and the voting turnout in Ladakh was 79%.

Sustainable Improvement

At a time when each political get together or chief talks of growth, we haven’t heard any MP from J&Okay increase the difficulty of sustainable growth in J&Okay within the Lok Sabha. We have now seen disasters taking place in J&Okay and different Himalayan states within the final 10 to fifteen years however what number of MPs have raised these points in Lok Sabha? 

Beneath the garb of tourism and growth, our forests, wetlands, mountains and valleys have been plundered however what number of Lok Sabha MPs raised this subject? Our apple orchards have been axed and land acquired by NHAI for the Srinagar Ring Street challenge however Lok Sabha MP Dr Farooq Abdullah by no means ever raised this subject in Parliament. 7000 kanals of land was acquired for peanuts in Srinagar, Budgam space and central land acquisition regulation relevant to J&Okay submit article 370 was not utilized in any respect. This regulation in any other case ensures 3 to 4 instances larger compensation however the Lok Sabha MP from Srinagar didn’t even subject an announcement nor did his get together protest over it. 

The poor farmers needed to search judicial intervention and the case is now pending earlier than the Supreme Courtroom of India.  When forest dwellers like Gujjars, Bakerwals and Chopans have been being evicted in 2020 by the Forest Division, no MP from J&Okay highlighted this subject in Lok Sabha . This writer wrote a collection of articles in lots of nationwide and native newspapers on the difficulty plus made a number of video studies and held protests as properly, however our MPs didn’t even hassle to fulfill the Union Minister of Tribal Affairs. It was solely after fixed protests by activists and media highlighting this subject the Govt determined to roll out the Forest Rights Act in J&Okay.

Greater than 90%  of farmers in all of the Himalayan states are marginal farmers as per official figures. The scale of small agricultural landholdings in Himachal Pradesh, Uttarakhand, J&Okay and adjoining areas was estimated to be lower than a hectare. This determine got here additional down within the 2015-16 Agriculture Census. Within the Kashmir valley, the place most farmers personal lower than half acre of land, any authorities coverage associated to land acquisition, particularly for “growth initiatives”, must have in mind the delicate mountainous atmosphere and weather conditions as properly.

Higher land compensation in Hill states

The Govt is meant to pay extra compensation for land acquired in Himalayan states like J&Okay , Himachal, Uttarakhand and Ladakh and the Proper to Truthful Compensation Act 2013 should be amended to include these provisions as folks in these areas have small landholdings and are thought-about to be beneath marginal farmers. Quite the opposite,  our land is being acquired and repealed land acquisition regulation is utilized for a similar. Did MPs from Himalayan states particularly J&Okay ever increase this subject in Parliament?

The land from beneath marginal farmers in Srinagar, Pulwama and Budgam was taken away for peanuts by Nationwide Highways Authority of India -NHAI in 2020 -2021 and the difficulty was not even raised in Lok Sabha. Our apple timber have been axed and provision of tree transplanting was additionally not given to farmers however this subject wasn’t raised in Lok Sabha. 

For the final decade, I’ve been saying that snow clearance works needs to be taken up beneath the MG NREGA in rural areas of Himachal , Uttrakhand and J&Okay however no MP ever raised this subject in Lok Sabha. Srinagar is choking with trash and our landfill web site at Achan is stinking. What number of conferences our MP held with the Union City Affairs Minister within the final 5 years. Was this subject ever raised in Lok Sabha?  


Participation of individuals in elections is the necessity of the hour as we can not solely complain and never be part of the answer. With out our participation within the electoral course of we can not anticipate supply of excellent governance. By electing good folks we not solely assist ourselves however this helps strengthen our democratic establishments as properly.  

Allow us to elect educated and energetic leaders who can signify our aspirations within the Parliament. We want leaders who can debate and differentiate between infrastructural growth and sustainable growth.  We want leaders who’re brave and have the power to speak successfully. We don’t want leaders who’re visionless. Allow us to all successfully take part within the upcoming Lok Sabha elections with full enthusiasm. Well-known writer Nannete L Avery says, “Speak is reasonable, voting is free; take it to the polls.”

  • Views expressed within the article are the writer’s personal and don’t essentially signify the editorial stance of Kashmir Observer 

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