The foundation-laying ceremony of Allahabad Municipal Corporations solid waste management project at Baswar in Chaka Block was cancelled on Wednesday following a face-off between the ruling BSP and the Congress.
The foundation stone for the project under Jawaharlal Nehru National Urban Renewal Mission (JNNURM) was to be laid on Wednesday by state Urban development minister Nakul Dubey.
It is learnt from highly placed sources that todays programme was reportedly cancelled by the minister himself,after he received information of a massive protest that was likely to be staged at the venue by Congress leaders and corporators.
Controversy began when the name of Mayor Chaudhery Jitendra Nath Singh was missing from the invitation card printed for the function. With the mayor being a senior Congress leader and president of city Congress committee,his absence from the invitation card caused resentment among Congressmen and corporators of Allahabad Municipal Corporation who alleged that the ruling party has ignored the established norms and conventions.
I was surprised to see the invitation card. My name was missing despite the fact that any function organised by the municipal corporation has to be presided over by me. It seems the ruling party leaders have not included my name deliberately, said Singh,while condemning the state government for stooping to such a low level.
Corporator Shiv Shankar added: Mayor is the first citizen of the city. By established norms and convention,he is supposed to preside over the function of the municipal corporation. Moreover,the Congress-led UPA government has sanctioned 50 per cent of the total budget for the Rs 48 crore-solid waste management project under JNNURM.
Municipal Commissioner Ashok Kumar,meanwhile,said he was unaware of the issue till the time the cards were printed.
The job of printing the invitation cards was done by subordinate officers. I will find out why his (mayors) name was not printed on the cards, Kumar said.
Congress corporator Mukund Tiwari,however,maintained: We will not allow the minister to lay the foundation stone for the project till the mischief done by municipal authorities is rectified and a due apology is officially tendered . The project should also be discussed in the house of the municipal corporation.