Congress high five
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The Congress made a clean sweep in the mayoral elections winning all the three posts. It is for the fifth consecutive time that the party won the election to all the three posts. Subhash Chawla was elected mayor by defeating BJP-SAD candidate Arun Sood by a margin of 12 votes. Rana Kashmiri Devi was elected senior deputy mayor and Satish Kainth deputy mayor.
In the 36-member MC House, 24 votes were polled in favour of Chawla and 12 for Sood. While Sood is a first- time councillor, Chawla has held the post of mayor in 2003. The BJP-SAD alliance polled one vote more than their strength of 11.
Accepting congratulatory messages from fellow councillors, Chawla took over the mayor's seat in the House to preside over the election to the other two posts.
For the post of senior deputy mayor, Devi polled 23 votes while her opponent BJP-SAD candidate Rajesh Gupta polled 13 votes. For Gupta, this was the second term as a councillor. Devi had contested the municipal elections for the first time last year after the seat held by her son Vijay Rana was reserved for a woman candidate. Despite not being regular in the House or raising any issues, she managed to win the election.
Kainth who was deputy mayor last year managed to get a second consecutive term. He received 21 votes. BJP-SAD candidate Malkit Singh polled 15 votes after the whole Opposition voted for him. BSP convenor Haffiz Anwar-ul-Haq said that for the post of deputy mayor, the Opposition was united and voted for the SAD candidate.
Union Minister Pawan Bansal termed it a wonderful win for the Congress. He said Chandigarh was a world-class city, but the sanitation conditions required an improvement.
Senior Deputy Mayor
Rana Kashmiri Devi (Congress): 23
Rajesh Gupta (BJP-SAD): 13
Satish Kainth (Congress): 21
Malkit Singh (BJP-SAD): 15
Mobile phones not allowed
ALL the councillors as well as those sitting in the visitor's gallery were asked to deposit their mobile phones at the entrance of the assembly hall. The polling booth was smaller in size as compared to the previous years. This was done following controversies in the previous elections over pictures of the ballot paper being clicked.
Scuffle in Mayor room
CONGRESS councillor Sat Prakash Aggarwal, who was a prospective mayoral candidate, and former councillor Bhupinder Singh Badheri entered into a scuffle in the mayor's office. The two shoved and pushed each other till the other leaders intervened to separate the two.
Supporters create a complete mess
The enthusiastic supporters of the newly elected mayor left his room a complete mess. The board where the names of former mayors is listed suffered damage along with a curtain in the room that was pulled down. The board where the engagements of the mayor are written was left hanging loose.
Celebrations on low-key note
Chawla kept the celebrations low-key with the usual drums missing. He said this was done to pay homage to the Delhi gangrape victim who died.
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