Exhibiting linguistic diversity of India, Delhi municipal councillors on Tuesday took oath in a range of languages, including Hindi, English, Urdu, Punjabi, Maithili, and Sanskrit.
However, after the oath-taking ceremony, the Municipal Corporation of Delhi (MCD) could not elect a mayor as its proceedings were adjourned, a second instance of the new House convening for the mayoral poll but not being able to complete the process.
While a majority of councillors took oath in Hindi, some took the same in English and a few others chose to read the text in Punjabi, Urdu, Sanskrit and even Maithili.
AAP mayoral candidate Shelly Oberoi and BJP's candidate for the post Rekha Gupta, both took oath in Hindi. Oberoi was welcomed by her party colleagues with a thumping of the desk as she stepped on the dais, and chanted 'Jai Hind, Jai Bharat' after taking the oath. Gupta was greeted by BJP members with a ringing chant of 'Jai Shri Ram' as she rose to take oath as a councillor. The nominees for the post of deputy mayor are Aaley Mohammad Iqbal and Jalaj Kumar (AAP) and Kamal Bagri (BJP).
Iqbal, a councillor from Chandni Mahal, who had won the election with a maximum margin of votes, took the oath in chaste Urdu. He chanted 'Hindustan Zindabad' after taking oath while fellow party councillor Ankush Narang took the oath in Punjabi and chanted 'Wahe Guru ji ka Khalsa, Wahe Guru ji ki Fateh' after it.
One of the councillors even took oath in Maithili much to everyone's surprise. BJP's Kamal Bagri, who came to the House wearing a traditional dress and a colourful 'pagdi', took the oath in Sanskrit, and chanted 'Jai Siya Ram' after it, which was reciprocated with 'Har Har Mahadev' from a member sitting in the House.'Jai Shri Ram', 'Bharat Mata ki Jai', 'Inquilab Zindabad' were among the slogans chanted by various councillors and nominated members of the MCD House.
Earlier in the day, Presiding Officer Satya Sharma administered the oath to the nominated members before the elected representatives of the MCD as AAP members raised "shame shame" chants in the House. Slated to begin at 11 AM, the proceedings of the House got underway 20 minutes later.
The post of mayor in the national capital sees five single-year terms on a rotation basis, with the first year being reserved for women, second for the open category, third for reserved category, and the remaining two again for the open category.
As the House was adjourned without election of the mayor, it prompted a protest by Aam Aadmi Party councillors and MLAs, who are still sitting in House, asking the Delhi Lt Governor to ensure the mayoral poll happens.