Chandigarh: BJP candidate Manoj Sonkar on Tuesday defeated AAP's Kuldeep Kumar, who was fielded as part of an alliance with the Congress, to win the post of mayor in the Chandigarh mayoral polls.
Sonkar polled 16 votes while Kumar secured 12. Eight votes were declared invalid.
Councillors of INDIA bloc parties AAP and Congress protested as soon as the results were announced. From Delhi, AAP convener Arvind Kejriwal accused the BJP of "cheating".
In a post on 'X', Kejriwal expressed "serious concern" over the "cheating" carried out in broad daylight. "If these people can stoop to this level in a mayoral poll, they can go to any extent in the national elections," the Delhi chief minister said in an apparent reference to the upcoming Lok Sabha polls.
"This is very worrying," he said.
चंडीगढ़ मेयर चुनाव में दिन दहाड़े जिस तरह से बेईमानी की गई है, वो बेहद चिंताजनक है। यदि एक मेयर चुनाव में ये लोग इतना गिर सकते हैं तो देश के चुनाव में तो ये किसी भी हद तक जा सकते हैं। ये बेहद चिंताजनक है।— Arvind Kejriwal (@ArvindKejriwal) January 30, 2024
The newly elected mayor will hold the elections to the posts of senior deputy mayor and deputy mayor.
As part of the alliance, the AAP was contesting for the mayor's post while the Congress has fielded candidates for senior deputy mayor and deputy mayor.
The polls, being held following the directions of the Punjab and Haryana High Court, assume significance with opposition INDIA bloc members Congress and AAP joining hands, even though they are yet to agree on seat-sharing in Punjab.
The BJP has 14 councillors in the 35-member Chandigarh Municipal Corporation. The AAP has 13 councillors and the Congress seven. The Shiromani Akali Dal has one councillor.