Dual posts: Locals, Cong demand Doon mayor to quit after election as MLAdehradun Updated: Jun 03, 2017 21:19 IST
Dehradun mayor Vinod Chamoli has drawn flak for ‘failing’ to concentrate on the civic woes of Doon ever since his elevation as Dharampur MLA. (HT Photo)
DEHRADUN: BJP leader Vinod Chamoli is facing attacks for continuing with the post of Doon mayor, after he was recently elected as an MLA from Dharampur seat.
Citing an amendment in the Municipal Corporation Act in Uttar Pradesh that mandates a person elected as legislator cannot hold the mayoral post, a Dehradun-based law student and the Congress have demanded Chamoli to step down immediately. Poll officials, however, say the provision don’t apply in Uttarakhand.
Uttarakhand adopted the Uttar Pradesh Municipal Corporation Act after it was carved out from the parent state in 2000. The Act governs all the six municipal corporations of the state.
Under an amendment (25A) to the Act in Uttar Pradesh in 2005, a provision barring legislators from becoming or continuing as mayor was added. It mandates within 14 days of election to the state legislature, a causal vacancy shall occur in the mayoral office unless s/he fails to mention which of the two offices s/he wishes to serve. Lucknow mayor Dinesh Sharma from BJP stepped down after election as an MLA in March.
On June 2, law student Mohak Rana from Dehradun wrote to Chamoli drawing his attention to the provision and urged him to step down. “It is painful to see that how a public authority and responsible representative like you is overlooking and breaching the law,” Rana wrote in his open letter. “It ‘s been more than two months of conclusion of the Uttarakhand elections and you continue to function on both the posts. The people who owe a duty towards the public should set examples by abiding law and not by breaking it.”
Congress spokesperson Sanjay Bhatt plans to approach the Election Commission in this regard. “We demand that he steps down from the mayor post immediately… the rules should be studied closely. Even on moral grounds he should vacate the post.”
Chamoli has drawn flak for ‘failing’ to concentrate on the civic woes of Doon ever since his elevation as a lawmaker. Even corporators of the BJP-led municipal corporation have accused him of being unable to address the city’s problems promptly. .
But Chamoli asserted he was continuing only because the norms allowed him to. “If I am still functioning on the mayoral post, it means that there are legal provisions for it…people (opposed to this) should get their facts right.”
State election commissioner Subardhan said the amendment was not applicable as it was made in the Act after Uttarakhand was carved out of its parent state. “As of now, it (the amendment) does not apply on Uttarakhand...it will have to be adopted first (for the provision to be applicable here),” he said.