Third Time Lucky? Polls To Choose Delhi Mayor Today
Here are the top points in this big story:
- The election was stalled twice, on January 6 over the question whether the 10 members nominated by the Lieutenant Governor are allowed to vote and on January 24 due to sudden adjournment by presiding officer claiming non order of house.
- While Arvind Kejriwal’s Aam Aadmi Party will win the Mayor post given its numbers, its situation will be precarious over the election of the standing committee, understood to be most powerful body in Corporation.
- Six of the 18-member standing committee will be chosen today in which AAP will win three seats and the BJP two. The fight is over the sixth seat, which will go to the BJP if the 10 nominated members – aldermen – are allowed to vote. The other 12 standing committee members will be chosen through zonal elections.
- 134 councillors of Arvind Kejriwal’s Aam Aadmi Party and an Independent member have written to the civic body’s presiding officer Satya Sharma, saying rules bar nominated councillors from voting. The alderman “should be kept out of the election of mayor, deputy mayor and standing committee,” they wrote.
- AAP won 134 of 250 wards in the first municipal election held after the merging of the MCD and redrawing of constituencies last year. The BJP finished second with 104 seats.
- The BJP’s seven Lok Sabha MPs from Delhi, AAP’s three Rajya Sabha members and 14 MLAs nominated by the Delhi Speaker are also allowed to vote. The Congress has said it would abstain, sparking allegations of “deal-making with the BJP” from AAP councillors.
- AAP had earlier objected to Lieutenant Governor VK Saxena naming the 10 aldermen without consulting the state government. It had also opposed to the appointment of Satya Sharma by the Lieutenant Governor, recommending Mukesh Goyal, the seniormost councilor in the house, for the post.
- Oath-taking by the 10 nominated aldermen and the question of their voting had stalled Mayor election twice. In the first election on January 6, AAP and the BJP members had physically clashed, pushing and punching each other, throwing tables and chairs and jumping on desks.
- The matter had even gone to the Supreme Court, where AAP sought a time-bound election and orders that the aldermen not be allowed to vote.
- AAP’s Mayor candidate Dr Shelley Oberoi — up against the BJP’s Rekha Gupta –withdrew the petition after the court pointed out that the election was due on February 6 and a detailed hearing will stall it again.