NFSA Row: Cuttack Municipal Corporation Mayor Accepted In Council Meeting


By dint of its brute majority in the Cuttack Municipal Corporation (CMC) council, BJD corporators today managed to officially accept without any discussion the resignation of Anita Behera, who had resigned from the post of Mayor last month over the ration card controversy.

Behera’s resignation was passed by a voice vote within minutes without holding any discussions on it after it was tabled by deputy mayor Ajay Barik.

Opposition Congress and BJP corporators, however, vehemently opposed the manner in which the resignation was accepted without any discussions on the cause and content of the resignation letter.

After it was revealed that Behera had managed to obtain a ration card in her name under the National Food Security Act (NFSA) to receive subsidised food grains, she resigned from the post and as a city corporator on December 29 last.
The CMC council was scheduled to officially ratify the resignation on the day and the deputy mayor tabled it proposing the special council to accept it.

Soon, two BJD corporators seconded the proposal and other party corporators supported it, prompting the deputy mayor to announce that the proposal was passed in majority by voice vote.

Even as the opposition corporators demanded discussion on the proposal, Barik, without paying heed to them, declared the special council meeting closed and rushed out of the council hall along with other party corporators.

“This is highhandedness and undemocratic on the part of BJD members in passing such an important proposal without discussion and we demand a fresh council election, dismissing the present one,” insisted Congress corporator Giribala Behera.

All BJP and some independent corporators also echoed similar feelings. Barik later told reporters that the special council was convened only to ratify the resignation letter of the former mayor. “No such discussion, as demanded by the opposition, was on the agenda,” he added.

Asmaa Mubita is a Kenyan journalist of international repute with over fifteen years of experience in broadcast journalism. Asmaa Mubita began his journalism career at the Kenyan state broadcaster (KBC) and later worked at the KTN owned by the Standard Group and Citizen Television, the flagship brand of Royal Media Services. These exploits together with his reporting experience with the Voice of America, CNN and BBC have been rewarded with local and global recognition.