The first mayoral election of Mohali was put off amid charges of horse-trading, leading to a clash between supporters of the Congress and the Shiromani Akali Dal-BJP outside the Municipal Corporation Bhawan in Sector 68 on Tuesday morning.
Though the media was barred from the meeting convened to elect the mayor, sources said that the members roughed up each other over alleged horse-trading charges, following which divisional commissioner S Karuna Raju, put off the election.
"There was manhandling inside," an eyewitness confirmed.
Interacting with Hindustan Times after the meeting, Congress MLA Balbir Sidhu said, "It's a murder of democracy. We never expected the Akali Dal-BJP combine to stoop so low. Now it is clear that they cannot tolerate the Congress and the Kulwant Group electing a mayor."
ACTION REPLAY OUTSIDE
Meanwhile, as news of the violence between members inside the municipal corporation office was received, supporters of the Congress and the Azad Group clashed with Akali Dal-BJP workers outside. They even threw stones at each other. The situation was brought under control before the Congress and the Kulwant Group held a protest against the SAD-BJP government for putting off the elections.
Earlier, the members were to elect the mayor by raising their hands at 11am. No party has a clear majority in the 50-member House. Kulwant Singh, who is leading the Azad Group, has staked his claim to the mayor's post with the help of the Congress.