Dehradun: Dehradun mayor and BJP MLA Vinod Chamoli staged a sit-in at the collectorate here and engaged in a public spat with the district magistrate demanding closure of a liquor shop which was allegedly opened against the wishes of the people in his Dhampur constituency.
Dehradun Mayor Sits On Dharna At Collectorate For Removal Of Liquor Shop
There was high drama at the collectorate with District Magistrate S A Murugesan and Chamoli getting into a heated exchange and Chief Minster Trivendra Singh Rawat apparently stepping in to resolve the issue.
The liquor shop was opened in Mothrowala yesterday despite opposition by locals on the grounds that it was a residential area.
When locals protested, some of them, including a former village head, were allegedly taken into custody, even as some others informed the mayor, who represents the area in the state assembly.
Accompanied by his supporters, Chamoli went to the collectorate to meet DM Murugesan, who happened to be away on an official engagement.
When the DM returned after two hours, Chamoli complained about having to wait to meet him for "so long". The DM responded by saying there was no prior appointment for their meeting.
Enraged by this, the MLA accused the DM of breaching protocol and sat on a dharna along with his supporters at the collectorate to protest the "high handedness of bureaucrats" and demand closure of the liquor shop.
The mayor also called up chief minister Rawat from the collectorate to lodge a complaint against the DM and the "domineering attitude of the bureaucracy in general".
Chamoli ended the dharna only after the DM came out of his chamber to apologise to him, apparently at the intervention of the chief minister. The DM also assured Chamoli that the liquor shop will be shifted somewhere else.
Many liquor shops in recent months have got shifted from ghihways to residential areas in and around the city, sparking protests by locals.
The shifting of these shops began after the Supreme Court banned them within 500 of highways in December last year.