BJP’s Alipurduar district president Ganga Prasad Sharma today joined the Trinamul Congress, along with eight other leaders.
The BJP leaders, including the party’s district general secretary, secretary, vice-president, convenor and deputy convenor of the Kalchini block in Alipurduar district, held the TMC flag in the presence the party’s Rajya Sabha chief whip, Sukhendu Shekhar Roy, education minister Bratya Basu and former railway minister and Trinamul Congress leader Mukul Roy, at Trinamul Bhavan.
After joining the party, Mr Sharma told reporters that though the BJP had done extremely well in Alipurduar in the last Assembly elections by winning all the five seats, he and his party’s office bearers decided to join the TMC following resentment in the BJP camp.
“Resentment against the BJP was there before the elections, when the central and state BJP leadership never bothered to consult us before fielding the candidates for the district. We felt insulted,” Mr Sharma said.
“However, we did not leave the party before the elections as we would be called traitors then,” he added.
He also slammed the BJP’s Leader of Opposition, Suvendu Adhikary, and asked if he would have remained in the BJP if he was not offered the Leader of the Opposition’s post.
On the other hand, reminded that Mr Adhikary had sent a letter to the Speaker, urging him to disqualify him, Mukul Roy said, “He should first ask his father Sisir Adhikary to step down from the post of MP as he has joined the BJP, though he won the elections on a Trinamul ticket from Contai.”
Back in Alipurduar, BJP leaders, including Alipurduar MP John Barla and four BJP MLAs, held an “urgent meeting” in the BJP office in Alipurduar town today. Madarihat MLA Manoj Tigga failed to attend the meeting as he was in Kolkata, it is learnt.
The meeting was held in the presence of Nikhil Chandra Dey, the MLA of Cooch Behar (South constituency), who is also the party’s observer for Alipurduar district.
“We will appoint a convenor for the party in Alipurduar district in a day or two. Two of our district general secretaries will look after the organisational work for the moment,” Mr Dey said.
He said that a party workers’ meeting will be held on 29 June, and that any organisational decision may be taken there.
“BJP is a political party based on ideology. Any leader may leave the party, but it will not affect our organisational structure,” Mr Dey added.