Pandemonium over censure motion continues

Source: The Hitavada      Date: 06 Apr 2018 10:33:00



Staff Reporter

THE House remained stuck on questions raised over legality of censure motion moved by the Opposition against the Municipal Commissioner during special house meeting of Jabalpur Municipal Corporation. Both the Opposition and the ruling party members were adamant on their views and when the Chairperson directed Law Officer Anil Mishra to clear doubts on the matter, the Opposition members raised doubts over his appointment as Law Officer. They said Baghel is holding the post. Later, Law Officer Mishra showed his appointment letter dated April 4.

Opposition members said changing of Law Officer a day before House meeting seems fishy. They thereafter demanded for counting of votes cast on censure motion. On the demand, the Chairperson directed officials to bring ballot box. Her order sparked utter chaos in the House. Raising objection over demand of counting of votes, ruling party members said as censure motion was against law hence counting must not be done. Meanwhile, the Chairperson repeatedly ordered to bring ballot box in the House but her directions remained unheard. Viewing Chairperson’s directions were not obeyed, Congress Corporator Sanjay Rathore took the ballot box in the House and kept it on Chairperson’s podium. This created pandemonium in the House. The ruling party members trooped into the well of the House and staged protest. They demanded the Chairperson to send the ballot box back. Amidst chaos the Chairperson sent the ballot box in her chamber.

Later, he asked ruing party members and the Mayor to inform the House whether they have studied censure motion letter or not? but no one replied to the Chair. The ruling party members and the Mayor remained silent. Expressing anger over circumstances in the House, Chairperson Sumitra Balmeek said respect and significance of Chair (podium) is no longer maintained. Time has come when she may leave the Chair. Without naming the Mayor, she recited a famous quote and said when holes appear in any boat the sailor repairs the openings to protect the boat from sinking. But it is not happening in JMC House. She said nobody took the pain to read the censure motion moved by the Opposition. Later, after prolonged debate on the issue she adjourned the meeting till 11 am on April 10.
The adjourned special meeting under Section 30 of JMC was organised at Pt Bhawani Prasad Tiwari auditorium at 11 am on Thursday. Discussion over prevailing water crisis was to be held during the meeting. But, the core issue could not be discussed owing to allegations and counter allegations between opposition and ruling party members. The special house meeting which was called to discuss water crisis on March 28 last turned uproariouswhen Corporators and Mayor-in-Council members of the ruling party locked horns. Barring discussion on burning issue, Bharatiya Janata Party corporators argued and also manhandled each other. Meantime, Opposition members brought censure motion against the Municipal Commissioner which was also supported by some ruling party members. Over 25 Opposition members and some ruling BJP corporators raised hands in support of the motion. The Chairperson later directed for voting on the motion. After voting ballot box was sealed and the meeting was adjourned till 11 am on April 5. Accordingly, the meeting was organised on Thursday. As soon as House proceedings started, the Opposition members demanded discussion over censure motion and also demanded the Chair to direct for counting of votes cast on censure motion.

Taking objection on the move, ruling party members said as censure motion and voting on the same was against the law hence counting must not be done. This sparked din in the House. Both ruling party and Opposition members had heated exchange of words. They also reproached each other over humiliation of women members in the House. Amidst chaos, the Chairperson had to adjourn the meeting twice. Hurt by the behaviour of House members, especially of ruling party members she said the Chair was not given due respect. Later, the Opposition members criticised the ruling party and JMC administration for misusing huge public money in the name of development works and Smart City Project. They also condemned JMC administration for paying thick salary to Law Officer and panel of advocates appointed by the JMC. Congress Corporator said the advocate were doing nothing and taking huge salary from the civic body.