Draw of lots may decide Kottayam municipal chief

LDF and UDF, which share 22 seats each, seem unwilling to align with the NDA

With the Left Democratic Front (LDF) and the United Democratic Front (UDF) sharing an equal number of seats in the Kottayam municipal council, luck will once again play its part in the election of the civic body’s new chairperson on Monday.

With both sides not in a position to find a way out of the stalemate, the winner is expected to be decided through a draw of lots. While Bincy Sebastian, former chairperson who was ousted through a no-confidence motion a month and a half ago, will once again be the UDF candidate, the LDF will field its senior councillor Sheeja Anil. The BJP, meanwhile, may field Reeba Varkey.

In the urban body that has 52 seats, the UDF and the LDF have 22 seats each. Hence, the stance of the National Democratic Alliance (NDA) that has eight seats in the council becomes decisive. But with both the fronts unwilling to align with the Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP)-led coalition, in all likelihood, the NDA candidate will be defeated in the first round and the winner will decided in the next round through draw of lots.

No-confidence motion

The ouster of Ms. Sebastian, an independent candidate who later sided with the UDF, through a no-confidence motion in September, had plunged the municipality into a political crisis. The motion, moved by the LDF, had received 29 votes including those of all eight BJP councillors.

While the motion’s success had come as a rude shock to the UDF, the LDF refused to stake claim to the chairperson’s post following allegations of an unholy alliance with the BJP.

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