Youth attaining 18 years age on Oct 1, 2022 or earlier to become voters in J&K

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Draft Roll to be published on Sept 15; claims, objections to be filed between Sep 15-Oct 25; final rolls on Nov 25, 2022

STATE TIMES NEWS

JAMMU: Jammu and Kashmir youth attaining 18 years of age on October 1, 2022 or earlier are set to get an opportunity to become part of voters list in the Union Territory.
According to a press release issued by the Office of the Chief Electoral Officer, UT of Jammu and Kashmir on Tuesday the draft electoral roll will be published on September 15, 2022, claims and objections can be filed between September 15 and October 25 this year while the final rolls will be published on November 25, 2022.
The handout added that the voter registration forms will be user friendly while single Form 8 has been devised for correction of entries, if required and voter card will be linked to Aadhar.
The schedule of Special Summary Revision with reference to 1st October, 2022 as the qualifying date has been notified in the Union Territory. “This is continuation to the earlier notification of June 29, 2022”, the press note said, adding that a notification in this regard had been issued by the Election Commission of India on August 8, 2022.
The press released stated that the Election Commission of India, in pursuance of the legal amendments in the Section 14(b) of the RP Act 1950 and consequent modifications in Registration of Electors Rules, 1960, whereby a provision for four qualifying dates i.e., 01st January, 01st April, 01st July and 01st October as eligibility for youngsters to register in electoral rolls as opposed to the earlier single qualifying date of 1st January only has been made, notified the Special Summary Revision(SSR) exercise for the UT of Jammu and Kashmir with reference to 1st October, 2022 as the qualifying date. This means that any person who attains the age of 18 years on or before 1st October, 2022 and is otherwise qualified to be enrolled as an elector in the Electoral Roll, can apply for his registration in the Electoral Roll during this SSR.
At present the pre-revision activities as well as post delimitation follow up work is going on in the UT of Jammu and Kashmir, wherein the existing electoral roll of the UT of Jammu and Kashmir are being mapped into the newly delimited assembly constituencies as per the Delimitation Commission’s final order made applicable by the Union Law Ministry w.e.f. 20th May 2022. As part of the Pre-Revision activities, the process of Rationalization/Re-arrangement of Polling Stations, Removal of discrepancies of Demographically Similar Entries/Photo Similar Entries, Duplicate EPICs, Preparation of Supplements and integrated draft roll with reference to 01.10.2022 as the qualifying date is going on at present in the UT of Jammu and Kashmir. The integrated draft Roll with reference to 01-10-2022 as the qualifying date shall now be published by all EROs of the UT on 15th September, 2022, marking the formal beginning of the revision activities.
The revision activities which shall begin on 15th September, include disposal of claims and objections received after publication of integrated draft electoral roll. In order to provide more opportunities to the youth of Jammu and Kashmir the Commission has extended the period for filing of claims and objections from 30 days to 40 days i.e. 15th September to 25th October, 2022. During this period Special camps shall also be organized by CEO Jammu and Kashmir on weekends for which the date will be publicized separately. During this period of filing claims and objections any person desiring of getting his/her name included in the Electoral Roll or desiring to file any other claim for correction of an entry or any objection against any entry in the electoral roll shall have multiple platforms available for doing so, viz; Offline Mode, by filing a hard copy of the claim/objection in the prescribed Form before the ERO/AERO or BLO concerned. Online Mode, by logging into https://www.nvsp.in portal or by downloading Voter Helpline App (VHA).
The final electoral roll after due disposal of all claims and objections filed within the stipulated time period shall be published on 25th November, 2022.
With the new amendments in the Law, the Commission has also made the registration Forms more user friendly and simpler. The newly modified Forms have come into force with effect from 1st August, 2022. Now, the Form 6 which was earlier being used for Registration of new electors and for shifting from one constituency to another constituency, shall be exclusively used for registration of New electors. There is no change in Form 6A. Form 7 which is used for objection to Proposed inclusion/for deletion of a name in Existing Electoral roll shall remain to be for the
same purpose with a slight modification that a provision for attaching a death certificate has also been incorporated. Form 8 has under gone a major change. Form 8 now can be used for multiple purposes, viz; correction of any particulars in the roll, shifting of residence (within or outside constituency), Replacement of EPIC, and Marking of Person with Disability. Form 8A which was earlier used for shifting within constituency has been abolished now, as the same provision is made in the new Form 8. In addition to these a new Form 6B has been introduced for capturing Aadhaar number of the existing electors. All Forms (wherever required) have been suitably modified to capture Aadhaar number from the new electors.
For linking of AADHAAR number with Electoral Roll data, provision has been made in the modified registration forms to seek Aadhaar details of electors. A new Form-6B has also been introduced for collecting Aadhaar number of existing electors. However, no application for inclusion of name in electoral roll shall be denied and no entries in electoral roll shall be deleted for inability of an individual to furnish or intimate Aadhaar Number. It has been emphasized that while handling Aadhaar number of the applicants, the provision under Section 37 of the Aadhaar (Targeted Delivery of Financial and other Subsidies, Benefits and Services) Act, 2016 must be adhered to. Under no circumstances should it go public. If the electors’ information is required to be put for public display, the Aadhaar details must be removed or masked. A Time bound drive is being started for collection of Aadhaar number of the existing electors by or before 01-04-2023. Furnishing of Aadhaar number is purely voluntary. Objective of the programme is to establish the identity of electors and authentication of entries in Electoral Roll.
For the purpose of improving the health of the electoral roll, the Election Commission has emphasized the need for field verification by the Booth Level Officers. There is a mechanism for supervision and checking for enforcing strict accountability of the work performed by different levels of electoral machinery, such as Supervisors, EROs and AEROs by field verification. Similarly, DEOs, Roll Observers and CEOs also check the work done by EROs before the final decision on claims and objections is taken. Besides, Officers from ECI and O/o CEOs are also deployed to further random checks and to supervise. Respective Divisional Commissioner have been designated Roll Observers in their respective divisions for the purpose of supervision the Electoral Roll work.
With a view to ensure more involvement of political parties, the Commission has allowed Booth Level Agents (BLAs) of recognized political parties to file applications in bulk, subject to the condition that a BLA shall not submit more than 10 Forms to BLO at one time/in one day. If a BLA files more than 30 Applications/Forms during the entire period of filing claims and objections, then the cross verification must be done by ERO/AERO themselves. Further, the BLA will also submit a list of application forms with a declaration that he has personally verified the particulars of the application forms and is satisfied that they are correct, the press note added.