The Ludhiana municipal corporation's House meeting on Monday witnessed women councillors demanding permission from the mayor to allow their husband or kin to attend the meeting as they keep proper knowledge about development and other works in their respective wards.
However, none of the women councillors spoke in the House about any problem being faced by residents in their respective wards. All this happened despite the fact that it had been decided in last House meeting that no kin of any councillor would be allowed to enter into the meeting after the interference of one of the family members of a woman councillor.
When the House meeting started on Monday, the policemen did not allow family members of any councillor to enter into the House, which forced the women councillors to ask the mayor to allow their kin to participate in the meeting.
Before adjourning the meeting, mayor Harcharan Singh Gohalwaria asked the House regarding the demand raised by women councillors and the House reached a conclusion that only one visitor could attend the House meeting with a woman councillor from next time. But, they would not interfere in the meeting and could not raise any matter in the House.
According to sources, spouses of majority women councillors keep information about the development works in their ward. They also attend to residents' calls on behalf of councillors, who, according to law, should answer to the residents' queries.
City resident Baljeet Kaur said, “If there is reservation for women, it is good for them and they should take benefit from it. I think our women councillors should become brave and raise the matter without any fear as people cast their votes to them and not to their spouses or family members.”
“They should also attend to the phone calls of residents and should have the ability to raise the matter in the House,” she added.
The mayor said there was no law that the family of any woman councillor should be allowed to enter into the House meeting. However, on the demand of women councillors, he said he kept the matter in front of the MC House.
Gohalwaria said, “I also told the women councillors that my wife remained a councillor for 10 years, but I never came with her to attend the House meetings. The representative is elected by the public and he/she should understand his/her responsibilities.”