Decided on May 23,1960

Kumar Dutta Appellant


- (1.) This application relates to the affairs of the Corporation of Calcutta. The Petitioner No. 1 is a sitting Councillor of the Corporation and the second Petitioner is a ratepayer. According to Sub-section (1) of Section 10 of the Calcutta Municipal Act, 1951 (hereinafter referred to as the "Act") the Corporation shall, at its first meeting in each year, elect one of its members to be the Mayor and another to be the Deputy Mayor. The procedure that is to be adopted at such an election is laid down in Section 93 of the said Act and runs as follows: Notwithstanding anything contained in Section 92, Councillors and Aldermen present at a meeting for the election of the Mayor shall elect one of their numbers who is not a candidate for election as Mayor, to preside over the meeting. If equality of votes is found to exist between any candidates for election as Mayor, the determination of the person to whom the additional vote shall be deemed to have been given shall be made by lot to be drawn in the presence of the candidates and in such manner as the Presiding Officer of the meeting may determine.
(2.) On April 5, 1960 notice was issued for the first meeting in 1960 under Section 88 of the said Act, to be held on April 11, 1960. There were three items in the agenda, the first being to elect a President under Section 93 of the said Act, to preside over the transaction of business, in the event of the outgoing Mayor, Shri B.K. Banerjee being proposed for re-election. The second item was to elect under Section 10(1) of the said Act, a member of the Corporation to be the Mayor. The third and the last item was to elect tinder Section 10(1) of the said Act. a member of the Corporation to be the Deputy Mayor. On April 11, 1900 the Councillors and the Aldermen of the Corporation met at a stormy meeting at which several astonishing things happened. Two Mayors and two Deputy Mayors were said to have been elected, as also a President. In this application, the election of the Mayor has not been made the matter of contest. It. is claimed that the election of Shri Satyananda Bhattacharjee as the President, and that of Sri Anil Moitra as the Deputy Mayor are invalid. The immediate reason for the making of this application is the receipt of a letter from the State of West Bengal dated April 19, 1960 written in exercise of powers granted to Government under Section 47 of the said Act. The provision runs as follows: The State Government may. after consideration of any representation which may be made by the Corporation, by written order, annul or omit from the records any proceeding of the Corporation which it considers not to be in conformity with this Act or any rules, by-laws or regulations made thereunder or with any other law. and may do all things necessary to secure such conformity.
(3.) In the said letter which has been addressed to the Commissioner, it has been stated that it appeared from the minutes as recorded, of the meeting held on April 11, 1900 that;

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