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Monday, September 14, 2009

Susmita Dev appointed SMB chairperson amid chaos

SILCHAR, Sept 14: Susmita Dev was declared the unopposed chairperson of the Silchar Municipality Board today. Amidst the 28 members, who took oath today, pro-term speaker Binay Krishna Das declared Susmita as the chairperson of the board. Although the proceedings of the ceremony were smooth, the situation suddenly became tense once the name of Susmita was announced.

Sources said BJP ward commissioner Dilip Paul had a brief discussion with MP Kabindra Purkayastha and later alleged that the BJP was not provided with the chance to file nomination for the post of chairperson. This created an environment of tension in the auditorium.

On the other hand, Santosh Mohan Dev was seen sobbing on seeing his younger daughter being elected as the SMB chaiperson. But, on hearing the allegation raised by the BJP leader, he climbed the dais and reportedly threatened a Municipality employee saying he had allegedly instigated the BJP camp. He also alleged that the municipality employee had earlier created problems for his wife Bithika Dev when she was elected as the SMB chairperson earlier, sources said. He also reportedly lodged a complaint with the Cachar Deputy commissioner Gautam Ganguly against the employee. Dev was later escorted back to his seat, while, Purkayastha, taking advantage of the situation, grabbed the microphone to wish Susmita good luck thus bringing the auditorium back into order. Meanwhile, BJP leader Dilip Paul told The Sentinel that they had yesterday contacted Ganguly to know about the process of filing nomination for the post of chairperson and they were told that any ward commissioner could file nomination for the post and there was no deadline for filing the same.

Paul further said: “The protem speaker did not give us time to know whether we had any candidate for the post or not and thus we were deprived”. However, Ganguly in a clarification during the meet said, according to the Municipality law there was no provision for formally inviting nomination for the post of chairperson or vice president.

Later, Susmita, in her brief but poignant speech, sought the co-operation and guidance of Purkayastha and reminded the BJP that their national leader LK Advani had once declared in the Parliament that for the elected public representatives, nation comes first and party politics later.

Apart from this brief episode of chaos and tension, the oath-taking ceremony was peaceful. 28 newly elected representatives took oath in a packed auditorium amid thundering applause. Vijayendra Prasad Singh was elected as the vice chairperson. Later, Susmita went to the municipality office and took charge from the administrator Supriyo Dutta. THE SENTINEL

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