KOCHI: Though the district Congress leadership claims that all is well in the UDF-controlled Kochi Corporation, resentment is growing among councillors against Mayor Soumini Jain. According to a Congress leader, a section of ‘A’ group councillors has approached the group leaders for removing Jain from the Mayor’s post.
“It is a fact that some ‘A’ and ‘I’ group leaders are frequently raising the demand to remove Jain from the post. In a recent meeting of ‘A’ group as well, some councillors expressed strong disagreement with the Mayor alleging that she was not cooperating with them. Several of them also alleged that she was always taking unilateral decisions. However, the party leadership has not taken a final decision in this regard,” said the leader.
The ‘I’ group is also actively campaigning against the Mayor citing an agreement about sharing the Mayor’s post between the two groups. Expressing strong protest against the Mayor’s decision to give her approval to a contractor to withdraw the security deposit, seven Congress councillors had registered a dissent note.
“There was an agreement between the ‘A’ and ‘I’ factions to share the Mayor’s post after two-and-a-half years. However, the Mayor was not ready to step down. Though the district Congress leadership offered the post to Shiny Mathew, Town Planning Committee chairperson, they failed to keep the word. Some Congress councillors openly came down on Jain by giving their dissent in writing. Indeed, all is not well in the Corporation,” said a source.
However, a top Congress leader in the district said the change of guard in the Corporation is not on their priority list yet. “Only 14 months are left for the current tenure to end. The Assembly byelection is also going to happen in a couple of months and if we go ahead with the plan to remove the Mayor, it will create a negative impression among the public. Moreover, the KPCC is happy with the Mayor’s performance, so the change of guard is not being discussed at this juncture,” said the leader.