Ministry toying with law

SILCHAR, Sept 16: Though the trouble torn Silchar Municipal Board was virtually in a constitutional crisis, Dinesh Prasad Goala’s Urban Development Ministry cared a little. Or to be precise, the Ministry’s recent order, coupled with Deputy Commissioner’s unexplained inactiveness to call a Board to elect a chairman and his deputy, had further complicated the crisis. However, sources inside the Congress hinted that Goala was actually planning to dissolve the Board and to depute an administrator with intention to prevent ousted Chairperson Susmita Dev seeking nomination for Assembly election with the pretext that the latter could not run the Board even for a year. In accordance with the Section 36 of the Municipality Act, Binay Krishna Das, a suspended Congress Ward Commissioner was made the interim chairman after Susmita and her deputy Vijendra Prasad Singh were voted out following the no-confidence motion moved by the BJP and supported by seven Congress Commissioners. As per the law, the interim chairman was supposed to call a Board meeting to elect a Chairperson and in case he fails to do so, the Deputy Commissioner was authorized to call a meeting, as mentioned in the Sub Section II of the Section 41. Interestingly, Das submitted a prayer to the Urban Development Ministry seeking further time. The Ministry allowed his plea on the ground that his prayer was being scrutinized. But according to the law, the interim chairman should have submitted application seeking extension to the Deputy Commissioner. In other words, the Urban Development was virtually toying with the Municipality Act, the State Government as well as the ruling party were mere spectators. And worst sufferers? Obviously the people of Silchar. (The Sentinel)

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