The Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) routs the Congress in the Mayoral elections as strongly supported by the Rashtriya Swayamsevak Sangh (RSS) and two-time councillor Asha Kumari Jaswal was elected the new Mayor of Chandigarh on Thursday.
Jaswal polled the highest-ever 31 votes in the history of the Municipal Corporation (MC) and was elected as the 21st Mayor of the fifth House. Jaswal defeated her rival Gurbax Rawat of the Congress by 31 votes. Gurbax polled just four votes.
The BJP made a clean sweep in the Mayoral elections as after the Mayor was elected, the Congress gave in and withdrew the candidatures for the elections of Senior Deputy Mayor and Deputy Mayor. The BJP’s Rajesh Kumar Gupta, alias Bittu, another two-timer, was elected unopposed as his rival from Congress Sheila Devi withdrew her candidature.
Similarly, the Congress candidate for the post of Deputy Mayor Ravinder Kaur Gujral also withdrew her candidature and cleared the road for BJP’s Anil Dubey to be elected Deputy Mayor unopposed.
The BJP-SAD combine has 21 councillors with one vote of MP and nine nominated councillors. The Congress managed only four seats with one as Independent which all together made 36 voters in the House.
Out of these 35 votes polled Asha Jaswal bagged 31, Gurbax Rawat just 4 votes, that of only Congress councillors.
Ex-officio member of the House, MP Kirron Kher was the first one to cast her vote which started at 11.26 am after which all the councillors cast their votes ward-wise and the process ended at 11.57 am.
Arun Sood and Devinder Babla were appointed as counting observes and the counting started at 12 noon after which the result of the Mayor’s election was declared at 12:04 am.
The Municipal Corporation elections were held on December 18 and the results were declared on December 20 in which the BJP won 21 seats out of 26 seats and four seats went to the congress.
The first term of the five-year House is reserved for a woman candidate from the general category, the next term is for a candidate from the general category, the third is reserved for a candidate from the Scheduled Caste category, the fourth term of the Mayor is for a woman candidate from the general category, while the fifth is for a candidate from the general category.
Total votes = 36
Valid votes = 35
BJP = Asha Kumari Jaswal: 31
Congress = Gurbax Rawat: 4
Vote not polled = Dalip Sharma (Independent): 1
BJP’s Senior Deputy Mayor Rajesh Kumar Gupta (elected unopposed)
BJP’s Deputy Mayor Anil Kumar Dubey (elected unopposed)
Babla warns Mayor of dire consequences, if support withdrawn Getting pepped up of drastic defeat in the Mayoral elections as well and citing non-cooperation by the BJP, the Congress councillor Devinder Singh Babla, while delivering his speech after declaration of the election results, allegedly warned the Mayor of dire consequences if support was withdrawn. However, the Mayor took the statement lightly and said she would take it as a suggestion.
Babla, during his speech in the open House, said, “We have come as minority in the House and we believe that the Mayor will not sideline us but will allow us to perform development works in our House. We must get respect in the House and full support to perform as we are also elected representatives. But if we do not get attention in the House and are neglected then we have other ways to deal with.”
In reply to this, Mayor Asha Jaswal said, “I am thankful for your valued suggestion but also fear the last statement given by you. Chandigarh will be made beautiful in real sense only if the Congress does not play negative role but work for development.”
BJP rebel councillor refuses to cast vote
BJP rebel councillor Dalip Sharma, who contested as an Independent and won from his ward, refused to cast his vote. Sharma said that he was neutral at present and would like to remain neutral. “I won as an Independent candidate and would like to remain neutral at present,” said Sharma.
Councillors’ seating plan changed; to sit ward-wiseHaving tasted the bitter experience of Congress councillors creating ruckus in the previous House, the BJP came out with remedial tactics and changed the seating plan, making it according to the ward-wise.
All the Congress councillors were seen sitting mingled with BJP councillors unlike the previous trend of Congress councillors occupying separate space on benches with the BJP in the middle and nominated members on the other side of the House.