There are more political than administrative reasons for the delay in Municipal Corporation of Gurgaon elections. Internal strife in the Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) cadres in the city, the sway the local MP has over councillors and fear of losing the polls is forcing the ruling BJP to delay polls, claimed sources in the political circles.
Lobbying among councillors, whose tenure ended on Tuesday, picked up pace after local MP and Union minister of state Rao Inderjit Singh advocated giving a chance to councillors elected in 2011.
“Provide another chance to tested people so that they can carry on development works four times more (than they did earlier) with their experience,” Singh said while inaugurating an MCG park at Bhim Nagar on Thursday.
Singh’s statement has spurred on some BJP leaders, including MLAs and about 20 councillors, who are considered to be of his camp.
In 2011 corporation polls, only four BJP supported candidates could win while more than 15 candidates were supporters of Singh, who was with the Congress at that time.
Posts of mayor, senior deputy mayor and deputy mayor were clinched by the Congress supported candidates and all of them joined the BJP along with Singh.
“He (Singh) will be a main force to reckon with, which the BJP cannot ignore. But his push for candidates’ selection will upset equations of other BJP leaders and the party has to cut some balance here,” said a senior BJP leader.
The tenure of 35 elected councillors ended on Tuesday and the election was scheduled in May but was delayed due to proposed delimitation of wards to 32 from 35. A senior district official said there might not be a need for delimitation as the government is expected to order a survey to ascertain the existing population.
MCG’s survey in 2011 had recorded the city’s population at 11.53 lakh on the basis of which 35 wards were formed. The 2011 Census, which came later, recorded the population at 9.9 lakh and it was decided in March this year to reduce wards to 32.
After the expiry of a board of a civic body, the government is expected to hold polls within six months. Sources claimed that the BJP is mulling holding elections in MCG and Faridabad municipal corporation at one go, but the party is wary of adverse results as these would deemed a setback in the Punjab assembly elections in February 2017.
“Elections will be held on time and the party is prepared for it,” said Gurgaon district BJP president Bhupender Chauhan.