BJP, Cong face-off over aldermen now

Civic agencies say no to govt nominees

Even as the political temperature in the city is rising two months ahead of the Assembly polls, the BJP-ruled municipal corporations are once again gearing up to take on the Sheila Diksit government — this time over the appointment of 30 aldermen by the Delhi government across the three civic bodies.

In a joint statement issued by the mayors of South, North and East Delhi municipal corporations, the Bharatiya Janata Party leaders said they have decided not to administer the oath of office to the aldermen appointed by the Delhi government as the appointments have been made with political considerations in mind.

The three mayors will call on the Lieutenant Governor Najeeb Jung to apprise him about their decision and the ‘wrongful’ appointment of the aldermen by the state government.

“The Delhi government appointed 10 aldermen each to the East, North and South municipal corporations. But these appointments were made ignoring the views of the three civic bodies and seem to have been made keeping in mind the political affiliation rather than merit of the persons appointed,” said Subhash Arya, leader of the House in South Delhi Municipal Corporation. 

“Quite surprisingly, Zile Singh has been nominated to North Delhi Municipal Corporation while he is a resident of east Delhi. This is a gross violation of the law,” he said.

The BJP leader added that the section 3B of the Delhi Municipal Corporation Act, that earlier dealt with appointment of alderman till 1997 House of the MCD, no longer mentions alderman as such.

“The word has been replaced by persons to be represented in the House of the municipal corporation. Still the Delhi government has nominated 30 aldermen in the three municipal corporations,” he said.

“Moreover, they are to be appointed at the beginning of the House’s term. While the BJP was in power in Delhi as well as in MCD in 1997, it appointed aldermen right at the beginning of the tenure of the House. But, the Congress government has announced the appointments when the present House has completed 16 months of its tenure,” he added.

The BJP leaders also questioned the ability of the people, appointed as alderman, in terms of knowledge about the administration of local bodies or expertise in some other field.

“The majority of the appointees have neither. These appointments have been made on the ground of their association with the Congress party,” Arya said.

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