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BJP wins senior dy mayor, dy mayor posts in Chandigarh

Source: PTI   -  Edited By: Hemant Waje
Last updated on: March 04, 2024 19:19 IST
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The Bharatiya Janata Party on Monday won the re-election for the posts of senior deputy mayor and deputy mayor of the Chandigarh Municipal Corporation, defeating the Congress candidates who were backed by the Aam Aadmi Party as part of Opposition's INDIA bloc.

On February 20, the Supreme Court had declared Aam Aadmi Party councillor Kuldeep Kumar as the new mayor of the corporation after it overturned the result of the January 30 mayoral poll, in which BJP candidate Manoj Sonkar had emerged the winner.

Its judgment had come on allegations of tampering with ballots during the January mayoral polls.


As the mayor is the presiding officer for the elections to the posts of senior deputy mayor and deputy mayor, the polls were held again on Monday after the change in the mayoral post following the court's judgment.

In the 35-member municipal corporation, the BJP's strength increased from 14 to 17 after three AAP councillors switched over to it on February 19. This tilted the scales in the saffron party's favour.

For the post of senior deputy mayor, BJP's Kuljeet Sandhu defeated Congress' Gurpreet Gabi. While Sandhu polled 19 votes, Gabi got 16, and one vote was declared invalid.

Rajinder Sharma of the BJP defeated Congress' Nirmala Devi to win the deputy mayor's post. The winning candidate secured 19 votes of the total 36 polled.

The BJP had fielded the same set of candidates last time and they had won then too.

The AAP has 10 members while the Congress has seven. The Shiromani Akali Dal has one councillor.

Chandigarh MP Kirron Kher, who is a BJP member, also has voting rights as an ex-officio member of the corporation.

After polling concluded for both the posts, Mayor Kumar thanked the councillors for the smooth conduct of elections.

The polls should be held in a transparent and fair manner in a democratic set up and democracy should not be murdered, said the mayor while referring to January 30 events.

Speaking to reporters later, senior deputy mayor Kuljeet Sandhu dubbed INDIA bloc a "total failure".

After victory on the two posts, BJP MP Kirron Kher congratulated her party's candidates.

Speaking to reporters, when asked if one can expect frictions when agendas are tabled in the House as mayor and his two deputies come from different parties, Kher said there should be no party politics when issues concerning public welfare are taken up.

Work of people should not suffer and there should be no party politics in those matters, she said.

Asked that the matter went to Supreme Court in the wake of January 30 episode, Kirron Kher said, "That was an unfortunate episode, I would not like to comment on it right now. I think I am happy that we have today won the two posts (senior deputy mayor and deputy mayor)."

Replying to another question, she said the BJP-led government has taken the country on a path of progress.

"BJP does work honestly. We have a prime minister who works day and night for people, works so hard to bring change in lives of weaker sections," said Kher.

Asked if she will fight the Lok Sabha polls or whether she expects to be re-nominated by her party, Kher politely declined to comment, saying, "Excuse me".

Despite the loss, Congress' Gurpreet Gabi said elections come and go. "But today we have won hearts after the whole country saw what happened in the January elections. We have shown how polls are conducted in a fair manner," he said.

In the January 30 poll, BJP's Sonkar had defeated the comfortably-placed AAP-Congress alliance candidate Kumar after the returning officer declared as invalid eight votes of the coalition partners.

Alleging tampering with ballots, councillors of INDIA bloc parties AAP and Congress had boycotted the elections to the posts of senior deputy mayor and deputy mayor, leading to the victory of BJP's Sandhu and Sharma then.

Kumar had on Wednesday assumed the charge as mayor of the Chandigarh Municipal Corporation, over a week after the Supreme Court declared him as the civic body's chief.

The court had also ordered prosecution of the returning officer for the January 30 poll, Anil Masih, a BJP leader, for his "misdemeanour", after finding serious faults in the conduct of the election.

Sonkar of the BJP had then defeated Kumar after polling 16 votes against his rival's 12 to bag the mayor's post.

Kumar had initially moved the Punjab and Haryana High Court against the declaration of Chandigarh mayoral result on January 30. After not getting any interim relief, he moved the Supreme Court for quashing the election of the BJP candidate as the mayor.

The Chandigarh administration on Tuesday had placed a formal schedule regarding the polling for the posts of senior deputy mayor and deputy mayor before the Punjab and Haryana High Court.

Congress councillors Gabi and Devi had moved the high court, challenging the notification of the Chandigarh deputy commissioner for conducting the polls for these posts on February 27.

The Union territory administration subsequently withdrew its earlier notification and issued the fresh notification for holding the poll on March 4.

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Source: PTI  -  Edited By: Hemant Waje© Copyright 2024 PTI. All rights reserved. Republication or redistribution of PTI content, including by framing or similar means, is expressly prohibited without the prior written consent.
India Votes 2024

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