BJP core group to meet in city today

Tribune News Service 

Chandigarh, January 12

The BJP core group meeting, which was to be held in Delhi on Saturday, will now be held here tomorrow morning to decide mayoral candidates.

City BJP core group members, including city in-charge Prabhat Jha, organisation secretary Dinesh Kumar, president Sanjay Tandon and MP Kirron Kher, will hold the meeting to decide candidates for the posts of Mayor, Senior Deputy Mayor and Deputy Mayor.

Sources said councillor Rajesh Kalia is the frontrunner in the race for the Mayor’s post as he comes from the Valmiki community, which has a good chunk of votes here. He had a criminal record, which the party wants to brush aside in lieu of the plea that all his cases had been cleared now.

Kalia has been a controversial councillor in the House. He had a spat with the former Medical Officer of Health, PS Bhatti. He had also threatened to go on a strike with the Dalit community if Bhatti was not removed.

Other contenders are Bharat Kumar, Famila and Satish Kainth. Sources said the party had made its mind about the candidature, but it wants to disclose the names in the city only. The core group members want to avoid any possible protest from within party councillors in the National Capital.

‘Kalia frontrunner for Mayor’s post’

Sources said councillor Rajesh Kalia is the frontrunner in the race for the post of Mayor as he comes from the Valmiki community, which has a good chunk of votes here. He had a criminal record, which the party wants to brush aside in lieu of the plea that all his cases had been cleared now.