Three-cornered contest likely for Mohali MC polls
With the Aam Aadmi Party (AAP) throwing its hat into the ring the Mohali municipal corporation is likely to have a three-cornered election in October this year even as the Shiromani Akali Dal ( Badal) and the Congress are gearing up for the contest, highlighting their achievements in the last five years on social media.
The splinter Akali group, Azad, floated by Sukhdev Singh Dhindsa last month is yet to decide on contesting.
The elections for which dates are yet to be announced will be held in 50 wards with 2.36 lakh people voting. The former councillors of the Congress and SAD have started reaching out to their voter base on social media with details of the work done in the last few years..
The five year term of the MC ended on April 26 this year. Previously, the Congress had won 14 seats and the Shiromani Akali Dal-Bharatiya Janata Party alliance had grabbed 23 seats. The Azad group had 10 seats and two seats were occupied by independents.
Then, 27 councillors, including 10 from the Azad group, 14 from Congress and two independents had elected Kulwant as mayor, but he joined SAD in August 2017.
On the current elections, AAP leader Narinder Shergill said, “We have decided to contest for all the 50 seats in Mohali. We are in the process of strengthening our organisation in the district and have already begun meeting with local RWA and other groups.”
Local MLA and cabinet minister Balbir Singh Sidhu said the Congress was ready for the polls. “The people of Mohali have seen development in the past few years and we are hopeful of winning the elections with a clean majority,” he said.
Former mayor and senior SAD leader Kulwant Singh said, “We are ready for the elections and have held a meeting with former SAD councillors. We have also approaching people to list out our achievements in the past five years.”
SAD ( Dhindsa) leader Tejinder Pal Singh Sidhu said a decision had to be taken on contesting. However, he added that “we will hold a meeting in this regard as we will not allow the Congress to sail smoothly.”
The MC has already submitted details of all the wards with populations to the local bodies department. Of the 2.36 lakh voters, 25,000 belong to the scheduled caste (SC) category. Five seats have been reserved for SC candidates, two for women (SC), three for backward classes (BC) and two for women (BC).
There are 43 general category seats, of which 23 are for women and 20 for men.
In April this year, heated words were exchanged when Sidhu said credit for all development works in Mohali in the past eight months should go to the state government.
Refuting the charge, Kulwant Singh had said most of the development took place in his tenure and that in the Congress most of the agenda approved by the house had remained stuck at local bodies’ offices.