Nominated councillors refused to fall for MP Kirron Kher’s gimmicks on Saturday, when she met them at the Punjab Bhawan in Sector 3, Chandigarh, in an attempt to convince them to vote in the Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP)’s favour in the upcoming mayoral elections.
Not amused with her rhetoric, nominated councillors claimed that they did not owe allegiance to any party.
They had also disapproved of the MP’s procedure to select the candidates.
The mayoral elections will be held on January 6.
Only five out of the nine nominated councillors met Kirron Kher.
They were Major DS Sandhu (retd), MP Kohli, Anoop Sunny Gill, Dr Amrita Tewari and Babu Lal.
Speaking to Hindustan Times, nominated councillor Major DS Sandhu (retd) said: “We told her that more than seven months had passed since she was elected MP and asked her as to why she remembered us only during the mayoral elections. She was unable to reply to our question and instead claimed that she did not have our contact numbers.”
When councillors pointed out that their numbers were listed in the UT administration’s records, she had merely smiled and avoided making any further comments. Sandhu said: “I reminded her that I had written several letters to her, requesting immediate action in the exemption of property tax of ex-servicemen. But, she failed to respond to them.”
Anoop Sunny Gill said: “She asked us to select candidates from among Bharatiya Janata Party candidates Asha Jaswal and Heera Negi.”
“However, we refused to do so and told her that this was not the appropriate procedure to choose candidates as the Congress also had two candidates. We are not from any political party and we shall let the BJP and the Congress choose their own candidates, after which we will take make a decision,” he added.
The nominated councillors will hold a meeting on January 3 to take a final call on the issue.
The fourth year of the House term will begin in 2015 and this time, seats are reserved for women candidates (general category).
The Congress has won the mayor’s post for seven years in a row, but this time, the BJP is expecting to win the post as they now have 15 votes, including the vote of independent councillor and MP Kirron Kher, who is an ex-officio member.
The BJP requires only three more votes to secure the post of mayor as the Congress is left with only nine councillors. For winning the elections, a candidate needs 18 votes.
Role of nine independent councillors
The nine nominated councillors play a decisive role in electing the mayor, senior deputy mayor and deputy mayor as both the Congress and the BJP have more or less equal number of councillors.
In the past three years, they have supported the Congress for the mayor’s post, but in January this year, they supported the BJP-Akali Dal for the post of deputy and senior deputy mayor.
In 2012, two Bahujan Samaj Party (BSP) members contested for the mayor’s post unsuccessfully, but for the past two years, they have been supporting the Congress for the mayor’s post.