One-third BJP MLAs skip meeting with West Bengal Governor

By Express News Service
KOLKATA: At least 23 BJP MLAs out of 74, who were supposed to accompany Suvendu Adhikari, the Leader of Opposition in West Bengal Assembly, to Raj Bhavan on Monday, did not turn up. Among the absent legislators, many of them are known for their close proximity to Mukul Roy, BJP’s national vice-president who joined the TMC on Monday.

Adhikari had asked all the MLAs to accompany him in Monday’s event at Raj Bhavan. “I’ve come here with 50 MLAs to hold a meeting with the governor. I gave him a memorandum regarding post-poll violence in the state and other issues,’’ said Adhikari after the meeting.

Governor Jagdeep Dhankhar said Adhikari had handed over the memorandum attracting his attention towards four points which include anti-defection law, post-poll violence and communal tension at two places.

Taking a jibe at the absence of BJP MLAs in the governor’s house, TMC’s Rajya Sabha MP and national spokesperson Sukhendu Sekhar Roy said, ‘’Where the other MLAs have gone? Why didn’t they accompany the Leader of Opposition?’’

Sources in the BJP said all the newly elected MLAs were asked to be present with Adhikari. “They were supposed to accompany him. But it was shocking that nearly one-third of our MLAs did not bother to follow the instruction,’’ said a senior BJP leader.

A section of the MLAs, who were not present in Raj Bhavan, already issued statements indirectly supporting Roy’s return to the TMC. They said the senior politician was sidelined in the BJP and he was not given the proper space in the party which led to his return to the ruling party.            

MLAs like Biswajit Das from Bagdah, Sabyasachi Dutta from Rajarhat-New Town, Rabindranath Bhattacharya from Singur and Sunil Singh from Noapara were missing in the rows of the MLAs in Raj Bhavan. All these people are known for their close proximity to Roy. The saffron camp is fearing that many of the absent MLAs may follow Roy’s foot-print in near future.