Delhi MCD Mayoral Elections Approved for April 26, Presiding Officer Appointment Pending

The ECI has approved the MCD mayoral elections in Delhi on April 26, 2024, but the appointment of a presiding officer is pending, potentially delaying the polls. The outcome could impact the power dynamics between the AAP-led city government and the BJP-led central government.

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Delhi MCD Mayoral Elections Approved for April 26, Presiding Officer Appointment Pending

Delhi MCD Mayoral Elections Approved for April 26, Presiding Officer Appointment Pending

The Election Commission of India (ECI) has given its approval for the Municipal Corporation of Delhi (MCD) to hold mayoral elections on April 26, 2024. The ECI stated that it has no objection, from the Model Code of Conduct angle, to the proposed date for the election of the Delhi Mayor and Deputy Mayor.

However, the appointment of a presiding officer for the election is still pending, as the file has not yet reached the office of the Lieutenant Governor (L-G) from the Chief Minister's office. The urban development minister, Saurabh Bharadwaj, has alleged that the file was sent directly to the L-G's office, bypassing him. If the clearance for the presiding officer's appointment is not received, there is a possibility that the mayoral elections may be postponed.

Why this matters: The mayoral elections in Delhi have broader implications for the power dynamics between the Aam Aadmi Party (AAP)-led city government and the BJP-led central government. The outcome of these elections could impact the governance and administration of the national capital.

The Aam Aadmi Party (AAP) has fielded Mahesh Khichi for the post of mayor and Ravinder Bhardwaj for deputy mayor, while the BJP has fielded Kishan Lal and Neeta Bisht for the respective positions. The Congress party, which has 9 members in the 250-member MCD House, has said its councillors will support the AAP candidates in the polls.

The electoral college for the elections includes 14 MLAs nominated by the Speaker of the Delhi Assembly and Delhi's seven Lok Sabha and three Rajya Sabha members. The Delhi Chief Secretary has already sent a file regarding the appointment of the presiding officer for the polls to the Lieutenant-Governor V.K. Saxena.

The appointment and role of the presiding officer for the mayoral election was also a matter of contention in the previous election in February 2022, with the AAP-led government arguing that its recommendation was not accepted by the L-G. The civic body officials are waiting for clarity on the matter before deciding the further course of action.

Key Takeaways

  • ECI approves MCD mayoral elections on April 26, 2024.
  • Appointment of presiding officer pending, may delay elections.
  • AAP and BJP field candidates, Congress to support AAP.
  • Electoral college includes MLAs, MPs, and Delhi Assembly members.
  • Presiding officer's role was a contention in previous election.