In a significant development in South Dinajpur district, the Trinamul Congress got back its majority in the South Dinajpur Zilla Parishad yesterday. Three Zilla Parishad members, who had earlier switched sides to the BJP, rejoined the TMC.
The party now stands in the majority with 11 members in the 18-member board. However, the post of the sabhadhipati is still with the BJP, which, experts say cannot be changed within two-and-ahalf years of the formation of the board as per the panchayat laws. The district Trinamul Congress leaders have, however, claimed that the ZP will be governed by the TMC and that the party members will resume work in their office at the ZP from tomorrow.
On 23 June, 10 elected members, including the sabhadhipati of the ZP, had switched over to the saffron brigade at the BJP office in Delhi. BJP leaders like Mukul Roy and state president Dilip Ghosh had claimed that the BJP had the majority in the South Dinajpur Zilla Parishad and that the saffron brigade had managed to take control of the first ZP in the entire state.
Following the move, district BJP leaders celebrated their “victory” in Balurghat, while on 11 July, the leaders and supporters welcomed the sabhadhipati, Lipika Roy, at the Nattyatirtha Hall, when she entered the Zilla Parishad office with BJP leaders. Only six of the 10 members, who had switched sides to the BJP from the TMC, were present with Ms Roy when they resumed office.
Yesterday evening, the district president of the TMC, Arpita Ghosh, presented three members of the ZP, Panchanan Barman, Ira Roy and Goury Mali, and said, “These three members have returned to the Trinamul Congress and have said that they will support the TMC.”
“The members will attend office from Monday morning and normal work will begin. Everything will change as per the law and it will take time. Our members will work as they are in a majority. Trinamul Congress will govern the Zilla Parishad as before,” Mrs Ghosh said.