Chandigarh Mayor Manoj Sonkar resigns ahead of SC hearing on controversial polls; 3 AAP councillors jump ship to BJP

08:49 AM Feb 19, 2024 | PTI |

Chandigarh: BJP leader Manoj Sonkar resigned as Chandigarh mayor and three AAP councillors joined the saffron party on Sunday, a day before the Supreme Court is scheduled to hear a plea alleging irregularities in the recently held mayoral polls.


Sonkar has submitted his resignation to the municipal commissioner, said Chandigarh BJP president Jatinder Pal Malhotra.

The Congress and the AAP do not have an alliance and are only befooling the public. They will be exposed before the public, Malhotra told PTI.

“Meanwhile, senior BJP leader Arun Sood said three AAP councillors have joined the BJP.

The BJP had swept the January 30 Chandigarh mayoral polls, in a setback to the Congress-AAP alliance that alleged tampering with ballot papers by the presiding officer.


Sonkar had defeated the AAP’s Kuldeep Kumar for the mayor’s post, polling 16 votes against his rival’s 12. Eight votes were declared invalid.

Kumar had later moved the Supreme Court.

On February 5, the Supreme Court had rapped the returning officer who conducted the Chandigarh mayoral polls, observing that it was obvious that he defaced the ballot papers and that he should be prosecuted, adding that his action amounted to “murder and mockery” of democracy.

The court had also ordered preservation of ballots and the video of the poll proceedings besides seeking the returning officer’s personal appearance during the next hearing in the case on February 19.



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