SRINAGAR: The elected councillors of the Srinagar Municipal Corporation (SMC) took their oaths on Monday at banquet hall, Srinagar. The oath was administered by Divisional Commissioner Kashmir Baseer Khan over a two-hour function.
One of the councillors, speaking on condition of anonymity, told Kashmir Reader that nearly 70 councillors, including 26 women, took oath, out of the total 74. One councillor from Fateh Kadal was absent while some wards have to go through re-polling and the Soura ward has to go through election again because no vote was cast there.
The government had informed the newly elected councillors three days ago about the oath-taking ceremony. They were ferried from secured locations where they had been accommodated since the elections began. The candidates who lost the elections have still not been moved out of these secured locations.
The municipal polls were held earlier this month in a tense atmosphere, with identities of candidates kept secret and calls for boycott coming from both the separatist camp as well as the two mainstream parties, NC and PDP. Threats to candidates were issued by militant outfits. The media was barred from covering the elections. Perks were given to candidates and also to government employees deployed for election duty.
Oaths will be administered to elected councillors in other districts in the next few days.
In his address to the elected councillors, Baseer Khan said, “People have high hopes with regard to development from you. Meet the expectations of people and take the development projects to new heights in Srinagar, so that the growth remains for all to see.”
District Election Officer, Srinagar, Dr Syed Abid Rashid Shah, Commissioner of Srinagar Municipal Corporation Peerzadah Hafeezullah, SDM (East) Riyaz Ahmad, and Assistant Commissioner Revenue Peerzada Zahoor, besides Returning Officers, were present on the occasion.