Chewed apples, punches and elbows in ribs: Blow-by-blow account of MCD chaos

The intervening night of Feb 22 and 23 witnessed high drama in the MCD house, with BJP and AAP MLAs using slaps, punches, chewed apples, and other weapons of choice to outwit the other in MCD standing committee election.

| Updated: 23 February, 2023 11:35 am IST

The Municipal Corporation of Delhi House on Wednesday turned into a wrestling ring with blows being exchanged between elected councillors of the Aam Aadmi Party (AAP) and Bhartiya Janata Party (BJP) during the voting for the selection of six standing Committee members of the MCD.

Slaps, blows, half-eaten apples as darts, and elbows in ribs- BJP and AAP councillors employed every trick in the book of physical attack and self-defence to outwit each other on the day when Delhi, even as after a prolonged impasse, Delhi finally got its Mayor and Deputy mayor. One would assume that with that the MCD house would witness some semblance of normalcy.

Instead what we got was a live telecast of unprecedented levels of chaos and drama in the intervening night of Wednesday and Thursday in the MCD house due to disagreement between BJP and AAP on selection of members of the most important panel in the house – the standing committee. Both AAP and BJP members broke into fistfights from time to time leading to frequent adjournments.

The process of the election began at 6 pm on Wednesday. There were at least 14 adjournments till 8.20 am on Thursday with no members of the Standing Committee being selected.

The BJP councillors wanted to cancel the voting of 45 members who voted while carrying mobile phones with them.

The BJP leader Vijendra Gupta said that the House rules do not allow phones during the casting of votes. The BJP councillors demanded fresh voting.

However, the AAP’s newly elected Mayor Shelly Oberoi said re-election could not take place as there were a limited number of ballot papers. The house has been adjourned till 10 am, Friday.

At midnight, the councillors attacked each other with water bottles. Some also threw half-eaten apples and threw mics at each other. Shelly Oberoi alleged that BJP councillors tried to attack her and that they tried to snatch her mic after marching to the dias. A BJP councillor Pramod Gupta alleged that he was slapped by the AAP councillors.

At about 1.30 am, AAP leader Saurabh Bhardwaj briefed the media outside the house and said that the party was determined to select the standing committee members during the ongoing sitting.

While the BJP persisted with its demand of fresh voting leading to multiple adjournments of the house, some AAP councillor, in retaliation, protested outside the MCD’s civct centre. They were detained and taken to police station, later.

At about 5.15 am when the house, again started, the fight broke out between BJP-AAP female councillors. Ballot Box was thrown by BJP councillors.

BJP councillor Rekha Gupta was seen uprooting the mic and thumping it on the ground.

Later, the house was adjourned till Friday at 10 am. While adjourning the house for the 15th time, till Friday, Oberoi said that the councillors did not participate in the election process in a constitutional manner, therefore action will be taken against them on Friday. She also said that fresh will not be conducted.

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