HC stays vote of confidence meeting for Halisahar
Kolkata: The Calcutta High Court on Friday stayed a meeting for holding a vote of confidence in the chairman of the Halisahar Municipality, on a plea by a councillor that the provision is being misused by the head of the civic body to get protection.Justice Samapti Chattopadhyay stayed the meeting on the no-confidence motion and holding of the vote, which was scheduled to be taken up at 3 pm on Friday, till July 23 when the petition will be heard again. The Trinamool Congress controlled Halisahar Municipality has been in turmoil since results of the Lok Sabha election came out. Appearing for the state, West Bengal Advocate General Kishore Dutta claimed that there was no illegality in the motion brought by some of the councillors. He submitted that other members should not be made to suffer for the whims of one councillor who has moved the high court. In the 23-member Halisahar Municipality, eight Trinamool councillors brought a no-confidence motion on July 10, following which the chairman called a meeting for holding a confidence vote. The municipal body in North 24-Parganas district has been going through trying times since the Lok Sabha election, in which former Trinamool Congress MLA Arjun Singh won from the Barrackpore seat as a BJP candidate. Halisahar falls within the Barrackpore constituency. Trinamool had 21 councillors, while there was one BJP and one independent member in the municipality. Seventeen Trinamool Congress councillors, including chairman Roy, joined the BJP in June, leaving Trinamool Congress a minority in the municipal body. With the drama still unfolding, nine of the 17 councillors, including Roy, later came back to the party folds of Trinamool, giving it a majority once again in the Halisahar Municipality with 13 members. BJP has claimed that Trinamool Congress has engineered the motion by its own councillors, so that the chairman can win and stave off any possibility of facing a no-trust motion within six months.