ZP chief chosen by lottery

Mangamma elected president; two contestants supported by 14 members each

ZP chief chosen by lottery

 Deputy Commissioner N Prabhakar, Regional Commissioner G M Dhananjaya and newly-elected Zilla Panchayat president Mangamma (centre) in Kolar on Thursday.  dh photo

The post of the Zilla Panchayat president had become vacant following resignation of M Srinivasan. Two Congress candidates - Mangamma and Ramachandra - were in the fray for the post, and both secured 14 votes each. Besides, both aspirants had filed two sets of nomination papers. Mangamma’s name was proposed by Swamegowda and Somanna while R Venkatarami Reddy and Muniraju had seconded the name of another contestant, Ramachandra. The nominations were scrutinised between 12.30 and 12.40 pm.

Deferred

The returning officer deferred the meeting by 30 minutes for lack of quorum at 12.45 pm. By that time, fourteen members - Gowramma, Mangamma, Vinoda, N Somanna, Hanumanthappa, Naveeda Khanum, Krishnamma, S Muniswamy, R Krishnappa, B V Swamegowda, K Yashodamma, M Srinivasan, S Shobha and G Rajanna - who had identified themselves with the Srinivasa Gowda faction in Congress had occupied seats at one portion of the auditorium. Another group of Zilla Panchayat members, owing allegiance Union Minister Muniyappa, namely,  Balaji Chennaih, J Krishna Singh, Narayanaswamy, K N Narayanamma, B N Kokila, V Venkatamuniyappa, T Muniraju, Nagarathna, R Venkatarama Reddy, G E Ramegowda, B S Kanaka, K S Vijayalakshmi and Lakkur Narayanaswamy arrived at the meeting venue. M Srinivasan attempted to lead Narayanaswamy to his side. However, Balaji Chennaiah, Krishna Singh and Muniraju succeeded in thwarting the attempt. All the three alleged that they had no liberty in the election.

Regional Commissioner G M Dhananjaya, who acted as the Returning Officer said he had come only to conduct elections and cannot comment on any other issues. He said the members have the liberty to sit anywhere they want.

During the voting, 14 members of Gowda faction raised hands in favour of Mangamma and equal number from Muniyappa faction supported another contestant, Ramachandra. Since both the aspirants secured equal number of  votes, the Returning Officer declared that the winner would be decided by drawing lottery. The name of Mangamma was mentioned in the chit took out by the Returning Officer and he declared her election officially.

Mangamma, who has become the ZP president for the second time, said she would accord priority to resolving water scarcity in the district. She said all the members would be taken into confidence to draw the attention of the government to the problems plaguing the district.

“The officers are not discharging their duties properly. They need to be sensitised on the problems in the district,” she said. Zilla Panchayat Chief Executive Officer G V Rangarao was present.

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