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Opinion

BJP Bengal unit prepares for Amit Shah rally today

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The West Bengal unit of the Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) prepared on Friday for Union Interior Minister Amit Shah’s rally in Midnapore on Saturday, where it is expected to bring in the leaders of the ruling party in the forced state. to vote in the saffron field even as defections from the ranks emerged as a headache for the Mamata Banerjee regime.

As of Friday night, efforts were made to ensure that at least a dozen top leaders join the BJP on Saturday, according to party informants familiar with the events.

“I can’t tell you the exact number because a lot of calls are being made and this will continue until the last minute. Many TMC leaders are ready to resign from the party, but some of them are under pressure from the ruling party leaders, ”a state BJP leader told HT on condition of anonymity on Friday night.

Shah’s plane was scheduled to land in Calcutta around 11:30 p.m. He will stay at a hotel in New Town on the eastern outskirts of Kolkata and attend internal party rallies and meetings in the Kolkata, East Midnapore and Birbhum districts on Saturday and Sunday. He will also have lunch with local villagers in the two districts, BJP leaders said. Shah will return to Delhi on Sunday afternoon.

The security arrangements were reinforced by the Union Ministry of the Interior and the state police in view of the stone-throwing at the convoy of the BJP national president, JP Nadda, on 10 December. Shah will fly to the districts by helicopter.

Suvendu Adhikari, a former East Midnapore district minister, is the most prominent name among those likely to join the BJP on Saturday. Adhikari kept quiet to the media even when BJP leaders said the Center was providing him with category Z security.

Adhikari drove to Bhubaneswar on Friday and took a flight to Delhi to meet Shah. “Suvendu and Shah will arrive in Kolkata on the same flight,” the close assistant to former TMC leader Kanishka Panda said Friday night. Panda was kicked out by TMC earlier this week. Adhikari and her family are residents of the city of Kanthi. Adhikari’s father, Sisir Adhikari, is the local deputy for Lok Sabha, while his older brother, Dibyendu Adhikari, is a member of Lok Sabha from Tamluk in the same district.

Meanwhile, Banashree Maiti, the TMC legislator from the Kanthi North assembly seat in East Midnapore, resigned Friday night and said she will join the BJP on Saturday.

Retired Army Colonel Diptangshu Chowdhury, who resigned from the BJP in 2017 and joined the TMC, has resigned from the posts of Chairman of the South Bengal State Transport Corporation and advisor to the monitoring cell on program implementation of government welfare services in the prime minister’s office. . It was speculated that he could also return to the BJP.

Making things difficult for Adhikari, the president of the state assembly, Biman Banerjee, announced Friday afternoon that he will not accept the resignation of the TMC lawmaker for technical reasons.

When Adhikari went to the assembly house on Wednesday afternoon to present his handwritten letter, the speaker was not present in his office. Although it was received by the assembly secretary, the letter raised several questions as Adhikari did not give it a date and did not write or sign it in front of the speaker, something that the assembly’s anti-desertion rules require.

“I have asked Adhikari to appear before me at 2 pm on December 21 and declare if he voluntarily wrote the letter and when it will take effect. If I am satisfied with your response, I will accept the resignation, ”Banerjee said.

“There is no hard and fast rule that one has to resign from the assembly before joining the BJP. They may resign later, ”said a state BJP leader.

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