Tussle begins for mayors’ posts
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After the shock defeat of SAD's mayoral candidate Harish Rai Dhanda, leaders have begun hectic parleys have begun to select the new mayor, even though the final decision rests with party president Sukhbir Singh Badal.
Among the frontrunners are Hakam Singh Giaspura. Chosen mayor in 2007, Giaspura is trying for a second term. However, he is facing opposition from within as SAD councillors want a mayor who is at least a graduate - Giaspura is not even a matriculate.
Atam Nagar MLA Simarjeet Singh Bains is pushing the case of Kamaljeet Singh Karwal as a "reward for accompanying him to jail in the Tehsildar beating case.
The next in line is Pal Singh Grewal, who was the member of finance and contact committee and had raised important issues regarding city's development.
Jagbir Singh Sokhi, who has won for the third consecutive term, has also come up as a possible choice for the post. Sokhi used to be close to Bains brothers but their relations soured after he joined Hira Singh Gabria's camp during SGPC polls.
Sources in the Akali Dal confirmed that as the party's score card has improved a lot this time, it was unlikely to take suggestions from alliance partner BJP regarding the mayoral candidate. "Once the rebels also join back the party, more than 50 per cent of the general house will have our men. So we can be more independent in taking decisions," a senior SAD leader said.
Damdami Taksal muddles Amritsar scene
Amritsar: In an apparent attempt to challenge the BJP's claim to get the the saffron party's candidate installed as Amritsar mayor, the Damdami Taksal chief, Harnam Singh Khalsa, on Monday said that the post should be given to a Sikh from Shiromani Akali Dal.
To hammer home his point, Khalsa, who began the kar sewa for the Bluestar Memorial in Golden Temple on Monday, said, Akalis won more seats (if rebels were taken into account) than BJP. Also, it being a holy city that houses historical Golden Temple, Amritsar should have a Sikh mayor, he added.
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