Context: By the order was issued by the Law Ministry a Delimitation Commission will be set up for the Union Territory (UT) of Jammu and Kashmir and the northeastern States of Assam, Arunachal Pradesh, Manipur and Nagaland.
- The delimitation exercise on the basis of the 2001 Census figures was last completed on November 26, 2008.
- However, this exercise was postponed in certain states such as Assam, Arunachal Pradesh, Manipur and Nagaland as there was an apprehension of threat to peace and public order.
- The Law Ministry said that The President is satisfied that the circumstances which led to the deferment of delimitation exercise does not exist now.
- A significant improvement in the security situation, reduction in insurgency and improvement in the law and order situation has taken place in these states.
- Concerning J&K, The UT of Ladakh will not have its own legislature, on the other hand J&K will.
- The new state assembly shall have 114 seats (currently 107), out of which only 90 will be open for elections, and the remaining 24 will be shadow seats reserved for the areas of the erstwhile state that have been occupied by Pakistan (PoJK).
- After the bifurcation of J&K into two UTs the need to redraw the Assembly constituency boundaries has been felt.
Composition of the Delimitation Commission
- The Delimitation Commission will be headed by former Supreme Court judge Ranjana Prakash Desai.
- It will also have Election Commissioner Sushil Chandra as the ex officio member of the Commission.
- Election Commissioners of the concerned States and UTs will also be members.
What does Delimitation mean ?
As per Election Commission of India, delimitation literally means the act or process of fixing limits or boundaries of territorial constituencies in a country or a province having a legislative body.
- Article 82: This provides for the enactment of a Delimitation Act after every Census by the parliament.
- Article 170: The States also get divided into territorial constituencies as per Delimitation Act after every Census.
Who carries out the exercise?
The Union government sets up a Delimitation Commission or a Boundary Commission once the Act is in force.
- For the present delimitation exercise, the population figures of 2011 census shall be taken as the basis.
According to the Delimitation Commission Act, 2002, the Delimitation Commission appointed by the Centre has to have three members:
- Chairperson: a serving or retired judge of the Supreme Court as the, and
- Ex-officio members: The Chief Election Commissioner or Election Commissioner nominated by the CEC and the State Election Commissioner.
The orders of the commission have the force of law and they cannot be challenged before any court.
Enforcement of Orders
Enforcement of commission’s order is undertaken as per the date specified by the President of India.
- The copies of these orders are laid before the Lok Sabha or the concerned Legislative Assembly and no modifications are permitted.
Image Source: The Hindu