Apurba Mukherjee (third from left) with the members of the board. (Arup Sarkar)
Durgapur, July 25: The Trinamul Congress today formed the board of the Durgapur Municipal Corporation after more than a month of haggling over key posts.
The first non-Left mayor of Durgapur, Apurba Mukherjee, today assigned departments to the seven mayor-in-council members but kept with himself development planning and finance over which leaders had been jostling.
At least 10 Trinamul councillors, including the “most experienced” Biswanath Padial who is apparently keeping himself away after being sidelined in the party, skipped the hour-long swearing in at the auditorium of Durgapur sub divisional information and cultural office.
The Trinamul Congress has bagged 29 seats of the 43 at the municipality. The results of the civic polls were announced on June 5, but the forming of the board was delayed by several leaders pitching for departments such as public works and development and planning.
A Trinamul youth wing leader close to Padial said their faction would not allow the board to work in peace. “It is a shame Padial was not given a place at the mayor in council though we think he is the most suitable candidate for the post of mayor. Padial was a Trinamul councillor at the corporation for four consecutive terms,” the leader said.
Padial denied comment on his absence from the event.
According to Apurba Mukherjee, who also heads the party in Burdwan, it was the leadership’s decision to finalise the mayor, deputy mayor, chairman, and the list of mayor in council members. He added that if anybody had objections or grievances, they were free to report to the party higher-ups.
On Padial not being given a place, Mukherjee said: “I will not comment on anybody’s demand. The party is not for single interest and nobody is indispensable here. People trusted our supreme leader Mamata Banerjee and have voted us to power. Now we want to start work.”
Asked about the delay in forming the board, Mukherjee said: “We wanted to check all the nitty-gritty of the work we have been assigned by the people to perform but frankly speaking, we have found only the pin and the elephant and do not know what is in between.”
The mayor added the borough committee chairmen would be selected soon.