What can be termed another setback for the Mamata Banerjee led Trinamool Congress, Saurav Singh, who was elected by a majority of Councillors of Bhatpara Municipality in North 24 Parganas took over as a new chairman, dislodging sitting chief Somnath Talukdar. Singh is the nephew of BJP's Barrackpore MP Arjun Singh and recently switched sides to BJP. He won the seat on May 19 by-poll defeating former TMC minister Madan Mitra.
As many as 26 sitting Councillors voted for Saurav Singh in the house of 35 municipal board. The board has now 33 members after one member died and former chairperson Arjun Singh quit Bhatpara municipal office to fight the Lok Sabha poll.
Rumour was also doing round across Bhatpara that the state government might appoint an administrator to run the show after dissolving it.The BJP sources said, in that case, the party may move the court of law for justice.
Located about 43 km to the north of Kolkata, Bhatapara municipality comes under Barrackpore Lok Sabha constituency. Arjun Singh was a four-time TMC legislator and the chairman of the Bhatpara municipality since 2010 till April this year. On 28 May, 13 of 23 councillors from Halisahar Municipality and 14 of 24 councillors of Naihati Municipality joined the BJP in Delhi. Four days later, the state government appointed an administrator for the Naihati civic body.