In a recent press conference, Chief Election Commissioner Rajiv Kumar announced that the 126 assembly seats and 14 parliamentary seats in Assam will remain the same after the process of redrawing constituency boundaries in the state.
The CEC held discussions with nine recognized political parties and other organizations over the last two days, along with around 60 civil groups, and will try to accommodate all their suggestions in the delimitation exercise.
The Chief Election Commissioner assured that every section of the community across the State will be considered fairly, within the legal framework and adhering to principles of equity
Political parties and organizations that participated in the exercise included TMC, BJP, CPI, CPI(M), NCP, Asom Gana Parishad, AIDUF, Bodoland People's Front, United People's Party Liberal, and three more registered parties: Assam Jatiya Parishad, Lok Raksha Party, and Raijor Dal.
The CEC said they had decided to hold discussions with stakeholders before publishing the draft of the delimitation exercise. He further stated that 126 assembly seats and 14 parliamentary seats will remain the same, but they will extend the date until April 15th for anyone to give their suggestions to the ECI.
Suggestions and recommendations received from stakeholders included taking the 2021 Census instead of the 2001 Census and increasing parliamentary constituencies instead of keeping them constant. One suggestion was to have a provision of 30% variation in the areas of lower Assam, where the population growth is low. Another point was raised about why the delimitation exercise is being carried out now when it is due in 2026.
Responding to allegations from Congress Assam Pradesh Congress Committee president Bhupen Kumar Borah that the delimitation exercise is "match-fixing," Rajiv Kumar stated, "We are habituated to hearing this. There is no point of fixation because first disclosure was done, and then we took suggestions before the publication of the draft."
The delimitation exercise was started in December last year in pursuance of a request received from the Union Ministry of Law and Justice. Delimitation falls under Section 8A of the Representation of the People Act, 1950. The last delimitation of constituencies in the state of Assam was done on the basis of census figures in 1971 by the then Delimitation Commission in 1976, under the provisions of the Delimitation Act of 1972.
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