Whose corporators are they? MNS, Shiv Sena set for legal battle in Mumbai
The MNS had written to the divisional commissioner asking to disqualify the six corporators, and bar them from voting in the civic body’s proceedings.mumbai Updated: Oct 27, 2017 00:53 IST
There is likely to be a long legal battle between the Maharashtra Navnirman Sena (MNS) and the Shiv Sena, over defection of six MNS corporators to the Shiv Sena, as the office of the divisional commissioner (Konkan region) accepted the petition of the MNS challenging the defection and seeking their disqualification. On Thursday, the corporators skipped the meeting of the civic house to avoid any legal trouble while the Sena came out in their support.
The MNS had written to the divisional commissioner asking to disqualify the six corporators, and bar them from voting in the civic body’s proceedings. As the civic general body meeting was scheduled on Thursday, the party issued a whip barring the six corporators from voting in Thursday’s general body meeting. The six MNS corporators, including the party’s former group leader Dilip Lande, however, skipped the meeting.
Prajakta Lavangare-Verma, who is handling the additional charge of the divisional commissioner, said the decision on disqualificaition is still pending. She said, “It is not in the capacity of the divisional commissioner to bar public representatives from attending BMC proceedings, or voting in them. I gave a hearing to both parties (MNS and the corporators who have defected) as MNS made an interim relief petition, but the verdict on their disqualification is reserved until the divisional commissioner returns to office. Their petition is accepted.”
Meanwhile, a public squabble ensued between Shiv Sena and MNS on Thursday. MNS issued a whip on Thursday directing the corporators not to vote in the general body meeting, and not to use delaying tactics to avoid the terms of the whip, which includes absence from the general body meeting. As per procedure, violating the party whip leads to automatic disqualification from the corporatorship. The MNS corporators who have switched sides are group leader Dilip Lande, Archana Bhalerao, Parmeshwar Kadam, Ashwini Matekar, Dattaram Narvankar, and Harshala More.
However, in response to the whip, Mayor Vishwanath Mahadeshwar defended the six corporators saying they have done nothing wrong, or violated the rule book in any way. He said, “The whip is invalid, as the party’s group leader issues the whip. In this case, MNS has no group leader. Dilip Lande is now part of Shiv Sena. These six corporators are now part of Shiv Sena, and no one can use pressure tactics to deter them from their goal. The entire Shiv Sena, along with chief Uddhav Thackeray are standing with the six corporators.”
Sanjay Turde, now the lone corporator from MNS said, “There is lack of clarity presently on the status of disqualification of the six MNS corporators. I am unsure if I am the sole representative of my party now. But MNS has severed all ties with these six corporators.” The split in the MNS is an outcome of the tussle between the Shiv Sena and the BJP to control the BMC, India’s richest civic body.