30 Congress councillors threaten to quit

Thirty party councillors have offered to resign from the MCD House to protest against the sealing drive, reports Amitabh Shukla.

india Updated: Nov 09, 2006 04:08 IST

The Delhi Congress is in damage control mode. Thirty party councillors have offered to resign from the MCD House to protest against the sealing drive. More resignations are expected in the next few hours.

The councillors have submitted their resignations to the leader of the House Jitender Kochhar. According to sources, almost all Congress councillors are planning to put in their papers by Thursday.

The BJP has termed the move a political stunt to win people's sympathy before the MCD polls in March in next year.

"They should have submitted the resignations to the Commissioner instead of the Leader of the House," said the BJP.

The state leadership, however, is mum on the issue. “The resignations are not against the government — Centre or the state. It is to protest the sealing issue," Delhi Pradesh Congress Committee (DPCC) president Ram Babu Sharma told the Hindustan Times. "Jitender Kochhar, the leader of the House in MCD, is in jail. A decision will be taken only when he is back," Sharma added. Police arrested Kochhar on Tuesday during the anti-sealing protests.

Sharma played down reports that the sealing issue had widened the rift within the Delhi Congress. "The protest is only against sealing and not against the party or the government," he insisted.

Sharma, however, asked the government to push for the implementation of the resolution to end the sealing row.

The resolution asked for an end to the MCD drive and allotment of alternate sites and shops for all those whose properties will be sealed in the court-ordered drive.

"The government and the chief minister are duty bound to get the resolution implemented. As elected representatives, we are duty bound to reflect the aspirations of the people," DPCC president said. Asked if any MLA would also resign, Sharma said, "it depends on them".

"We are hurt by the renewed sealing drive. We have offered to step down so that we can join the traders in their hour of need," said a Congress councillor.

Email: ashukla@hindustantimes.com

First Published: Nov 09, 2006 04:08 IST