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Directly-elected presidents will cause chaos: Oppn.

Published On : 29 Nov 2016   |  Reported By : Courtesy : The Hindu   |  Pic On: Photo credit : The Hindu


 Though BJP has 52 president’s posts under its belt, councillors are likely to be from other parties.

Mumbai (The Hindu): The Bharatiya Janata Party’s (BJP) gamble of going in for direct elections of municipal council presidents appears to have paid off, with the party winning 52 presidential posts in the elections held on Sunday.

However, the decision spells trouble for the functioning of the councils, as most of the newly-elected councillors are from other parties in many municipal councils. A section of poll-watchers predict this will likely create more friction between the council president and councillors, and may hamper developmental works in these cities.

For example, in Western Maharashtra’s Karad Municipal Council, former Chief Minister and senior Congress leader Prithviraj Chavan’s front will be in majority, but the council president will be from the BJP. Similarly, in Sawantwadi, Congress leader Narayan Rane’s front emerged victorious, but the elected councillors will have to work under a president from the Shiv Sena. Similar cases have been reported throughout the State.

While opposing the move when it was introduced in the Legislative Assembly, Mr. Chavan had warned that it would lead to confusion and chaos, and adversely affect development. This was previously seen in Latur, where similar problems made then Chief Minister Vilasrao Deshmukh to decide against implementing it across the State. “The move is not likely to help anyone. This will create trouble for the council’s functioning and should not have been implemented,” Mr. Rane said.

In semi-urban and rural areas, where municipal councils hold civic responsibility , a directly-elected president creates a second power centre in the tehsil to the the MLA’s. Sources in the BJP lauded the move, which ensures that credit for developmental work in these areas will have to be shared with the party. “If the area has our MLA, then we can claim that all development is being done by us. If the MLA is from an Opposition party, no work can be done without the president’s help. So, we have no issues with the move,” said a senior party leader.







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