Defence Minister Rajnath Singh on Wednesday said that “terrorism and separatism were defeated” in local body elections in Jammu and Kashmir and rejected allegations of National Conference and PDP that there was no “level-playing field” in the recently concluded DDC election.
“There was a level playing field. Everyone was free. Nobody was under detention and were free to move about. But the results which came out of the local bodies and gram panchayat polls have made it clear that terrorism and separatism were defeated and democracy won in Jammu and Kashmir,” Rajnath Singh said in an exclusive interview with ANI.
He was asked about allegations levelled by National Conference and PDP that they were not given a level-playing field in the recent District Development Council elections in Jammu and Kashmir.
The National Conference and PDP had fought the elections as part of People’s Alliance for Gupkar Declaration (PAGD).
The alliance won 110 seats while BJP won 75 seats and emerged as the single largest party. Independents won 50 seats and smaller parties also won on several seats.
NC leader Omar Abdullah had alleged that the administration did not provide them a level playing field “at the behest of the ruling-BJP”.
PDP leader Mehbooba Mufti had accused the Centre of “sabotaging” the participation of non-BJP parties in DDC polls.
The panchayat elections were held in Jammu and Kashmir in 2018 and the bypolls for vacant seats were held alongside DDC polls.