Cor­po­ra­tors’ dis­qual­i­fi­ca­tion set­back for NCP

IL­LE­GAL CON­STRUC­TION Sources said the three Digha cor­po­ra­tors are plan­ning to ap­proach the high court for a stay; op­po­si­tion par­ties pre­dict NCP’s down­fall

Hindustan Times ST (Mumbai) - HT Navi Mumbai Live - - NAVI - G Mo­hi­ud­din Jeddy ht­for­nav­i­mum­bai@hin­dus­tan­times.com

A day after the three cor­po­ra­tors from Na­tion­al­ist Congress Party (NCP) were dis­qual­i­fied, the op­po­si­tion par­ties are con­fi­dant of rul­ing party los­ing ground.

On Tues­day, after months of hearings, mu­nic­i­pal com­mis­sioner Tukaram Mundhe dis­qual­i­fied three cor­po­ra­tors from Digha for their in­volve­ment in il­le­gal con­struc­tion.

The elec­tion de­part­ment of the Navi Mum­bai Mu­nic­i­pal Cor­po­ra­tion (NMMC) had is­sued show cause no­tices on April 21 to cor­po­ra­tors Navin Gavte (ward 4), his wife Aparna Gavte (ward 9) and sis­ter-in-law Deepa Gavte (ward 3).

The three are ac­cused of il­le­gal con­struc­tions in Digha, which is in the midst of a ma­jor con­tro­versy of de­mo­li­tion of il­le­gal build­ings or­dered by the Bom­bay high court.

The or­der signed by Mundhe on July 16 states that each of the cor­po­ra­tors “is hereby dis­qual­i­fied as the coun­cil­lor of Navi Mum­bai Mu­nic­i­pal Cor­po­ra­tion u/s 10(1D) of the Ma­ha­rash­tra Mu­nic­i­pal Cor­po­ra­tion Act, 1949, for the re­main­der of the term as a coun­cil­lor of Navi Mum­bai Mu­nic­i­pal Cor­po­ra­tion.”

The Gavtes re­fused to com­ment.

Sources said they are plan­ning to ap­proach the high court for a stay.

They have ear­lier de­nied any wrong do­ing claim­ing they have not re­sorted to any il­le­gal con­struc­tion in the area.

Su­raj Patil, city NCP (youth) pres­i­dent, said: “Just be­cause we have lost three cor­po­ra­tors in the house, does not mean we have lost the ma­jor­ity. We still have the req­ui­site num­bers with the sup­port of the in­de­pen­dents and the Congress. Hence, the claims by the op­po­si­tion mean lit­tle and are just hype and pro­pa­ganda.”

He added, “Our leader Ganesh Naik is per­fectly ca­pa­ble of han­dling such sit­u­a­tions. The NCP is the rul­ing party and will con­tinue to be so.”

The dis­qual­i­fi­ca­tion is a boost for the op­po­si­tion which has de­clared that it is tar­get­ing the mayor’s post.

Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) city pres­i­dent and cor­po­ra­tor Ram­chan­dra Gharat said, “The NCP is al­ready short of ma­jor­ity in the house and los­ing three cor­po­ra­tors will make it worse for them. The stand­ing com­mit­tee is led by a Shiv Sena cor­po­ra­tor. The NCP does not even have a ma­jor­ity in it now with both sides boast­ing of eight mem­bers as the Congress mem­ber is ex­pected to sup­port the op­po­si­tion.”

He added, “Av­inash Lad of the Congress is the deputy mayor. With all the ma­jor posts in the civic body, the NCP is left with lit­tle to show that it is still in power. We will now work out plans to get the mayor’s post which is def­i­nitely go­ing to hap­pen.”

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