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Chaos reigns at MCC meeting

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TROUBLE IN THE HOUSE: Unruly scenes during the Mangalore City Corporation council meeting on Thursday. PHOTO: R. ESWARRAJ
TROUBLE IN THE HOUSE: Unruly scenes during the Mangalore City Corporation council meeting on Thursday. PHOTO: R. ESWARRAJ

Special Correspondent

Confusion was over the seats for two `expelled' Congress members

  • The members demand a letter from the KPCC on their expulsion
  • BJP comes out in support of the two members

    MANGALORE: Chaotic scenes and dharnas characterised the meeting of the Mangalore City Corporation (MCC) council here on Thursday, which ended with the meeting being adjourned indefinitely.

    The confusion was over the seating arrangements of two former members of the ruling party who had voted against the whip issued during last month's election of the chiefs of standing committees. When Mayor Vijaya Arun directed the two members, Kavita Sanil and James D'Souza, to take their seats in a separate enclosure away from the ruling benches as they had been expelled from the Congress, the two refused to do so, saying they had not got any letter to that effect from the Karnataka Pradesh Congress Committee (KPCC).

    `No letter'

    Ms. Arun replied that they would not get any letter as the KPCC had asked her convey its decision on their expulsion directly to them.

    At this point, the Opposition BJP came out in support of Ms. Sanil and Mr. D'Souza, which irked the Congress. Pandemonium prevailed, and for a long time nothing could be heard above the din. Ms. Arun then adjourned the meeting for the first time.

    When they re-convened 20 minutes later, the same scenes were witnessed. One of the ruling party members, Vishwanath, wanted the expelled members to be taken out of the Congress enclosure and seated elsewhere, and he squatted on the floor in front of the Mayor's table, refusing to get up unless his demand was met. This prompted BJP members too to crowd around the Mayor's table, and they began arguing with Ms. Arun loudlyWhen the situation showed no sign of improvement, Ms. Arun got up and walked out of the hall. She later adjourned the meeting indefinitely. In all this time, no official business could be conducted.

    With this rebellion in the party, the strength of the Congress has been reduced to 42

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