SAMBALPUR: Kalpana Sahu of the rebel BJP group was elected unopposed as chairperson of Sambalpur municipality on Tuesday. She was the only candidate to have filed the nomination papers for the post and had the support of the Congress. Sahu was instrumental in the ouster of former chairperson Reena Trivedi of the BJP in February 2012.
Though Congress did not comment on it, a senior worker of the party said, "The party had left the decision to the councillors and we decided to support Kalpana Sahu for the post", a Congress leader said on Tuesday. "As Kalpana Sahu was leading the entire operation, we agreed to make her the chairperson," a Congress councilor said. The rebel BJP faction, led by vice-chairperson Siddharth Saha, had tried to topple Trivedi in 2011 but had failed.
After the elections in 2009, 15 seats went to the BJP, 13 to the Congress and one to an independent. As the post of chairperson is reserved for woman, Reena Trivedi of BJP became the chairperson.