The Congress on Wednesday decided to support Kulwant Singh, who is leading the Azad group comprising 10 independent councillors, for the first-ever mayoral elections of SAS Nagar municipal corporation. The elections are set to take place this month.
The Congress councillors met in hotel in Sector 70, SAS Nagar, on Wednesday wherein it was decided that the party would support Kulwant group. The Congress, which has 15 votes (including the vote of MLA Balbir Singh Sidhu) will be supporting Azad group having 10 votes. In this scenario, the alliance would need the support of one independent counicllor to win the mayoral polls.
Speaking to HT, Congress MLA Balbir Singh Sidhu said, “We have decided to support Azad group to save SAS Nagar from the misrule of Akalis. We even have the support of two independent councillors and are hoping to sweep the mayoral polls.”
As per sources, Congress will be nominating Kulwant Singh for the post of mayor, while the post of senior deputy mayor will go to Congress, while the post of deputy mayor will be given to one of the two independent councillors.
Kulwant Singh, however, said, “Our group has not joined hands with any party so far, but talks are on and a decision will be taken soon in this regard.”
Fearing horse-trading, Kulwant Singh has taken his supporter councillors to an undisclosed location in Himachal Pardesh. This is fourth time since the municipal corporation results were declared that coloniser-turnedpolitician Kulwant Singh has taken the councillors on a sojourn to the hills.
Meanwhile, SAD senior leader and the party’s SAS Nagar incharge Balwant Singh Ramoowalia said, “Punjab CM has already made it clear that mayor will be from SAD-BJP. We have 23 councillors and there is no problem in getting three more votes. Also, we will never allow a person to become the mayor, who had backstabbed the Akali Dal.”
With the Punjab and Haryana high court on Tuesday directing MC to hold mayoral polls within 15 days, MC commissioner Uma Shankar Gupta said, “Though the date has not been decided yet, the polls will likely be held on August 17 or 18. Deputy chief minister Sukhbir Singh Badal, who is coming to SAS Nagar on Thursday, will announce the date.”