JAMMU: The Jammu and Kashmir government has ordered freezing of boundaries of all administrative units in the Union Territory till completion of census 2021, fourth such move since the year 2020.
“In exercise of the power conferred by clause (iv) of rule 8 of the Census Rules, 1990 and in supersession of all notification issued in this behalf, the Government of Jammu and Kashmir hereby freezes the boundaries of Districts/Tehsils, Municipalities, Towns, Revenue villages and other Administrative units in the whole Union Territory of Jammu and Kashmir w.e.f 1st July, 2023 till completion of Census 2021”, read the notification issued by the Planning Development and Monitoring Department in this regard.
It may be mentioned that the State Governments and Union Territory Administrations are empowered to freeze the administrative boundaries from the date to be intimated by the Census Commissioner which shall not be earlier than one year from the census reference date and till the completion of the census under the Clause-IV of Rule 8.
Like other States and Union Territories in the country, the Registrar General of India in the month of July 2020 had given the opportunity to the Government of J&K UT for redefining the boundaries of the administrative units on the basis of representations, if any, received from the people.
But due to outbreak of COVID-19 pandemic, the field work of Phase-I of Census 2021 and other related activities had to be postponed, following which the date of freezing of boundaries was extended up to December 31, 2020.
With no let up in COVID-19 pandemic, the time period for conducting the ensuing census could not be decided and accordingly the date of freezing of boundaries was further extended up to March 31, 2021.
In September that year, the government extended for the third time the date of freezing of boundaries to December 31, 2021.
Today’s notification is the fourth of its kind in Jammu and Kashmir since the year 2020.