The BJP on Thursday urged the Election Commission (EC) to remove “political appointees” from various boards of administrators in civic bodies appointed by the West Bengal government, saying it appointed the same representatives who had completed their term of five years in blatant violation of constitutional and legal provisions.
A BJP delegation, including Union minister Dharmendra Pradhan, two party general secretaries Bhupender Yadav and Kailash Vijayvargiya, Om Pathak and Sanjay Mayukh, submitted a representation to the poll watchdog, asking it to take necessary steps for ensuring free, fair and transparent assembly elections in the state.
Noting that there are 135 municipal bodies in the state out of which 125 have completed their term of five years back in April-May 2020, the BJP accused the ruling Trinamool Congress of “influencing” the state election commission to postpone their elections.
“Thereafter, the TMC-led government in utter disregard to the mandate of the Act and the Constitution of India and by colourable exercise of power, appointed ex-Mayors and elected representatives belonging to TMC and their workers as administrators in most of the municipalities,” it alleged.
Since the tenure of former elected representatives has expired, they cannot be conferred powers to manage affairs of the municipality under any pretense, the BJP delegation told the EC and cited a Supreme Court ruling to back its demand.
“The commission is requested, in exercise of powers vested in it under Article 324 of the Constitution of India, to eject the political appointees from the various boards of administrators appointed by the State Government of West Bengal and take other necessary steps for ensuring free, fair and transparent elections,” it demanded.
Assembly elections in West Bengal will be held in eight phases between March 27 and April 29. Counting of votes will take place on May 2.