Bengaluru, Sep 28 (IANS) Congress woman corporator Gangambike Mallikarjun was on Friday elected Mayor of the Bengaluru’s municipal corporation after the BJP walked out of the civic poll, said an official.
Gangambike was declared elected as Bengaluru’s 52nd Mayor by 130 votes, which is the required majority, Regional Commissioner Shivayogi Kalasad said.
Her opponent was the Bharatiya Janata Party’s Shobha Anjanappa but the party’s corporators did not take part in the election.
Gangambike, 40, represents the upscale Jayananagar ward and Shobha is from Padmanabhanagar ward in the city’s southern suburb.
Bengaluru, a city of 11 million people, is India’s IT capital.
“I am grateful to all those who voted for me and thank the party leaders for believing in me. I look forward to taking up the city’s responsibility. Tackling garbage crisis is my priority,” the beaming Mayor told reporters.
Janata Dal-Secular (JD-S) woman corporator Ramila Umashankar from Kaveripura ward in the western suburb was elected the Deputy Mayor.
She defeated BJP’s Pratibha Dhanraj from Nayandahalli ward in the southwest suburb.
Even though the BJP has more corporators (100) in the 198 civic wards across the city, a pre-poll alliance between the ruling Congress and the Janata Dal-Secular (JD-S) in the corporation denied it the coveted mayoral post for a second consecutive year.
Of the 198 corporators in the greater civic body, the BJP has 100, Congress 75 and JD-S 15 and there are eight independents.
In addition to 198 corporators, 5 Lok Sabha members and 9 from the Rajya Sabha and 28 of the Assembly and 19 of the Council in the state legislature representing the city constitute the 259-member electorate for the mayoral election every year.
Alleging that the Congress and JD-S alliance had “hijacked” some of the independents who offered support to the BJP, its legislators and corporators staged a protest walkout ahead of the voting.
“We had independents supporting us but the Congress and JD-S hijacked them. We did not want to be a part of an illegal election, as the polling officials were also supporting the ruling alliance,” alleged BJP legislator R. Ashoka.
Refuting the allegation, Congress state unit President Dinesh Gundu Rao told reporters that it was the BJP which “kidnapped” the independents to win the mayoral election with money and muscle power, which was evident on the floor of the house ahead of the polling.
“We won the mayoral election because all our members stuck together and had the support of the independents,” Rao claimed.