Mayoral elections: Cong, BJP to fight internally first

Congress has four prospective candidates for the mayor's post, BJP is plagued by factionalism

As the contest begins to elect the mayor, senior deputy mayor and deputy mayor on January 1 — the notification of the election date was issued by the UT Deputy Commissioner on Wednesday — both the Congress, which has at least four mayoral contenders, and the BJP, which faces factionalism, will have to set their houses in order first.

The Congress has four prospective candidates for the mayor's post. Of them, Subhash Chawla and Pardeep Chhabra have had one stint each as the mayor in the previous tenures of the civic body. The other two contenders, Mukesh Bassi and Sat Prakash Aggarwal, are first-timers. Each one is lobbying hard to be the party candidate.

As for the BJP, factionalism is quite evident with protests against the party leadership being out in the open. While divisions were already present, these have become more pronounced now. The names of councillors with affiliations to different camps have been doing rounds for being the prospective candidates. These are Rajesh Gupta, Arun Sood, Davesh Moudgil and Saurabh Joshi.

However, the lobbying in BJP has not picked up as is the case with the Congress. After the recent internal strife in the party, the decision on mayoral elections seems to have taken a back seat.

Both the parties are likely to announce by next week their candidates for the election which will be important for them in the run-up to the Lok Sabha elections.

Having nine votes of the total 36, the nominated councillors will be playing a decisive role in the elections. The Congress has 12 councillors in the House while the BJP has 11. The BSP with two councillors and one Independent is also yet to decide which party to vote for. Union Minister Pawan Bansal is the ex-officio member of the House and has one vote. The nominated councillors had in the previous election voted en masse for the Congress.

Mayor's post for general category

The election for the mayor, senior deputy mayor and deputy mayor is held on January 1 every year. The post of the mayor for the year 2012 is kept for a candidate from the general category. With the seat being reserved for the general category twice in the five-year tenure, the number of candidates vying for the same is high. Nominations are to be filed on December 28 between 11 am and 5 pm.

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