HC blow to Navi Mumbai civic chief, relief to disqualified netas

Updated: Dec 03, 2016, 09:44 IST | Vinay Dalvi

Court stays process against five corporators who had been disqualified by Navi Mumbai civic commissioner Tukaram Munde for allegedly carrying out illegal construction

On October 25, a no-confidence motion was passed against Navi Mumbai municipal commissioner Tukaram Munde
On October 25, a no-confidence motion was passed against Navi Mumbai municipal commissioner Tukaram Munde

In a major jolt to Navi Mumbai municipal commissioner Tukaram Munde, who had disqualified five corporators (three from the NCP and two from the Shiv Sena), the Bombay High Court yesterday stayed the process of their disqualification.

In court
Senior counsel Anil Sakhare appearing for the corporators — Standing Committee chairman of the Sena Shivram Patil and his wife Anita — argued in court that the corporators had themselves passed a no-confidence motion in October against Munde, and hence, today, the commissioner’s position is in question.

The corporators also argued against application of section 10 (1D) (disqualification for being a councillor and doing illegal acts), claiming that the commissioner had no powers to disqualify them and that he could only send a suggestion to the general assembly, which had the powers to forward it to a civil court.

Arguments and illegalities
“If such powers are given to the commissioner to control elected representatives, there will be a problem and he (commissioner) will start dominating them,” said Sakhare.

However, senior counsel Ashutosh Kumbhakoni appearing for the corporation argued that the commissioner had the powers to act as he did and if the councillors had any dispute they should appear before the civil court.

However, justices Naresh Patil and Makarand Karnik granted a stay on the process of disqualification till January 10.

Munde had disqualified the Patils for allegedly carrying out illegal construction in their hotel and residence. The couple has claimed that the hotel is owned by their son.

NCP corporators Aparna Gavate, Dipa Gavate and Naveen Gavate, who were accused of carrying out illegal construction in Digha, also got court relief.

Majority against Munde
On October 25, a no-confidence motion was passed at the Navi Mumbai Municipal Corporation against Munde, who is considered a people’s man. The motion was passed 105-6 at a special meeting convened by the corporation and chaired by mayor Sudhakar Sonawane. The Sena, which has 37 corporators, had earlier opposed it but later supported it; only the BJP that has six corporators voted against the motion.

105
No. of corporators in favour of the no-confidence motion

6
Number of corporators who voted against the motion

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