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No trust? Yes, but no to civic board

Siliguri, Dec. 25: Trinamul is unlikely to form the board in the Siliguri Municipal Corporation in the event of the Congress failing to prove majority, sources in the state’s ruling party said today.

Trinamul needs 24 members in the 47 ward-civic body to form the board. The present strength of the party is 15. The Congress has 14 members and the Left Front has 18.

Trinamul is confident that it would be able to table a no-confidence motion, for which it would need one more than its 15 members to favour the motion. But leaders in the party said it could be tough to get 24 members to form the board.

“It is unlikely that we would take over the board for several reasons. Primarily, we lack the necessary number of 24 members (half-plus-one of the total strength),” a senior leader of the Darjeeling district Trinamul said today.

Trinamul has been trying to woo some Congress and Left councillors so that its tally increases to 16, suitable to table a no-confidence motion against the “minority” Congress board.

“We will table the no-confidence motion the moment we get the support of at least one councillor either from the Left or the Congress,” the Trinamul leader said.

Sources said the decision to move the motion was Trinamul’s strategy to mount pressure on the Congress. If the Congress gets support from the Left, then Trinamul will get an issue to campaign against the two parties before the civic polls scheduled next year.

“The general elections are near and the Left would prefer to keep a distance (from the Congress). There are chances that the Congress might not be able to save the board. The only way out would be to depute an administrator,” said a Trinamul insider.

“If the administrator is appointed before the board is dissolved, questions might be raised against us,” he added.

A senior Trinamul councillor said: “The Congress has failed to carry out civic work in the past four years. Now, even if we run the board, it is not possible to plug all the holes. Deputing an administrator is a better option.”

Darjeeling district Congress president (plains) Shankar Malakar said: “Since 2009, Trinamul has tried to interrupt activities at the civic body. The Congress is running the board in a consistent manner and will not approach any party for support.”

Trinamul minister Gautam Deb had earlier said the no-confidence motion would be tabled by December 31.