Thorappadi town panchayat president resigns

Special Correspondent

VELLORE: President of the Thorappadi town panchayat K. Sugumar, against whom a no-confidence motion was to be initiated on Wednesday, resigned “owing to family circumstances” following dramatic developments in the panchayat office. The council has 15 members, comprising five from the Dravida Munnetra Kazhagam, three from the All India Anna Dravida Munnetra Kazhagam, two from the Pattali Makkal Katchi, one from the Congress and four Independents. Though the PMK had only two councillors, the president’s post was allotted to it. Following the dissatisfaction of a majority of the councillors with the panchayat president, 10 out of the 15 councillors, including the DMK councillors and the three AIADMK councillors, on May 21 gave notice for a no-confidence motion against him.

Assistant Director of Town Panchayats Thiruvengadam had announced that a special meeting would be held on Wednesday to take up the motion.

When councillors started assembling in the council hall, DMK district presidium chairman T.A. Mohammed Saqhy and Vellore panchayat union DMK secretary R.P. Ezhumalai stopped the DMK councillors from proceeding to the hall and persuaded them not to attend the meeting and press for the motion. But the councillors including vice-president Thirumal announced that they would resign in the presence of the presspersons if the no-confidence motion was not allowed.

Later, after negotiations, Mr. Saqhy and Mr. Ezhumalai requested PMK leader N.T. Shanmugam, to secure the resignation of Mr. Sugumar. On the request of Mr. Shanmugam, Mr. Sugumar offered to resign.

Following his resignation, eight councillors, including the five DMK councillors, offered to withdraw the no-confidence motion.

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