Jammu: Senior Congress leader Ghulam Nabi Azad on Saturday batted strongly for holding Assembly elections in Jammu and Kashmir on "due time", claiming that a new government will have greater authority to deal with the post- flood situation in the state.
"Rehabilitation is a gigantic task under these circumstances. When we are neck deep in rescue and relief operations, one totally forgets as and when and how elections will take place. But my personal opinion is sooner the election the better it is," Azad told.
Elaborating his point on the issue, Azad said that, "We must have an elected government sooner the better it is. Whatever may be the compulsion of the government will have greater authority to deal with the situation".
"I do not think this government will be capable to deal with the situation," Azad said.
"So, it is in the interest of people of the state that elections be held on due time and reigns of the government will be taken by the newly-elected government -- that government should come up to the expectations of the people of the state," the Leader of Opposition in the Rajya Sabha said.
He further said that since the expectations are very high and those expectations can be fulfilled by the representatives of the new government.
Justifying his stand on polls on due time without any delay, Azad said "my personal experience over last several decades period in the government at the national level that six months before the elections, state elections or national elections in any part of the country, administration and the people start looking towards the composition of the new government".
"Officers and the administration in general do not have
that enthusiasm to work which we have seen in state and national level also ahead of this elections," Azad said.
He further said "... In backdrop of the situation of the state and some parts of Kashmir valley because of the unprecedented flood, I do not think... This government will be capable to deal with the situation".
In a veiled attack on the present government, he said that some of ministers and officers fled from flood-battered Kashmir valley.
Jammu and Kashmir Chief Minister Omar Abdullah had earlier opposed any delay in holding the Assembly polls in the state on the plea of floods and said there would be no difficulty in holding the elections on time.
"We will control the situation, which is bad. I feel that the election can be held at its own time. We feel that there would be no difficulty of holding the election," he had said.