When parties played the numbers game...

It was number game all through the day for political parties including the Congress, the BJP and the JD(S), with different versions doing the rounds on the composition of the electoral college of the BBMP who can elect the mayor.

Section seven of the Karnataka Municipal Corporations Act, 1976, defines the constitution of a city corporation and subsequently, the electoral college that can elect the mayor.

In the case of the BBMP Council, the Section states that besides the 198 elected corporators, Lok Sabha members and MLAs representing a part, or, whole of the city, and whose constituencies lie within the City, are eligible to vote. Besides, MLCs and Rajya Sabha members who are registered as electors within the City are eligible to vote. The government can nominate as many as 19 members to the BBMP, but they are not eligible to vote.

In effect, the strength of the BBMP Council for mayoral polls will be 250. The minimum seats required for a party to get its major elected will now be 126 (50 per cent of the total strength).

However, on Friday afternoon, the BJP claimed that the effective strength of the Council was 265 and that it had included the nominated members. Later, it took a U-turn. The KMC Act states that the nominated members to the BBMP cannot vote, but it is silent whether the members nominated to the Rajya Sabha and the Legislative Council enjoy voting powers.

Another version, apparently prepared by a source in the BBMP, that did the rounds in the social media groups, put the strength of the electoral college to 255, thus fixing the magic number to 128.

List of eligible voters

According to sources, the BBMP Council Secretary should prepare the list of eligible voters in the BBMP Council. However, the process has not commenced as the BBMP is waiting for the Urban Development department to gazette the list of the newly elected corporators and also for the Regional Commissioner to come out with a calender of events for holding the mayoral polls. The reservation for the post of mayor and deputy mayor has also not been finalised though it is said that both the posts are reserved for the General Category.

The electoral college remains not just for electing the mayor but also for all BBMP meetings where a resolution or budget will have to go through the voting process. Such a situation so far has not been witnessed by the Palike.

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