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South Mumbai corporator ousted for violating 2-child rule

Gulshan Chauhan, the NCP corporator won her seat from Khar Talao-Nal Bazar in 2007, gave birth to her fourth child in 2001.

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Priyanka Sharma

Updated: Dec 08, 2011, 12:54 AM IST

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In a first, the state election commission has disqualified a sitting woman corporator from South Mumbai after she was found violating the ‘not more than two-child’ norm.

Gulshan Chauhan, the NCP corporator won her seat from Khar Talao-Nal Bazar in 2007, gave birth to her fourth child in 2001. She was invalidated of her seat on November 18.

“State election commission had been scrutinising her case and finally disqualified her on November 18 for violating BMC Act1888 section 16(1) B, which lays down the ‘two child’ rule,” confirmed an election official.

With an eye on family planning and health benefits, the state election commission in September 2000 framed directives that restrict the number of children for corporators to two. Under the rule, any corporator having a third child after 2001, is liable to be stripped of their election seat. Also, the commission bars anyone with over two children from contesting a local body election.

Every corporator at the time of filing nomination must submit a duly signed form that states their being aware of the terms and conditions of the poll commission.

“But the court found that Chauhan flouted the two-child clause despite being in the know,” he added.

Chauhan was dragged to the court on the issue by opposition Samajwadi Party leader Farida Masoori, who contested for the same seat in 2007 but could only garner the third highest votes.

Expressing his displeasure at the court’s decision, Gulshan’s husband, Salim, said they would appeal against the order.

“Though my wife gave birth to our fourth child in 2001, her younger sister adopted our two eldest kids. So, we just have two children and she is eligible to contest for the polls,” he added.  Meanwhile, the election commission allows contestant to adopt a child after giving birth to two children.

However, civic officials doubt Salim’s claims.

“The court has given its verdict. As per the law she has been disqualified from her seat. It is doubtful if she will be allowed to contest in the coming civic polls,” said Mrudula Kulkarni, municipal secretary.

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