Mukul Roy, one of the senior leaders of West Bengal’s ruling Trinamool Congress, has decided to quit the party. This development, as the state is celebrating Durga Puja with fervour, comes as a blow to Chief Minister and party chief Mamata Banerjee, who has been recently in news for allegedly trying appeasement politics in the name of Durga idol immersion. According to PTI, Roy has said he will resign as Rajya Sabha MP and from party’s primary membership after Durga Puja. Today, he resigned from Trinamool Congress working committee today.
Interestingly, Roy’s decision comes at a time when he was reportedly in talks with senior BJP leaders recently. An NDTV report quoted sources as saying that Roy had met with top BJP leaders last month and he was “getting close” to the saffron party. On Monday, Roy didn’t explain as to why he quit Mamata’s party. But Roy did say that he was “forced” to resign and he was leaving the party “with heavy heart and pain”. Who forced him? Roy didn’t answer but hinted that he may have been “forced” by Mamata.
When asked if he would join the BJP, Roy said he would come up with detail after five days. Recently, West Bengal BJP chief Dilip Ghosh had confirmed that Roy was in touch with top saffron party leaders and they may consider if the Rajya Sabha MP would like to join Amit Shah’s party.
Roy was the number two leader in Mamata-led Trinamool Congress. He was also the founding member of the party. At a press conference, The Indian Express quoted him as saying on Monday, “I was the one who was the first to sign, when Trinamool Congress was formed on December 17 1997. With a heavy heart today, I have decided to separate myself from the party. I will reveal the reasons after the Durga Pujas.”
Roy’s decision to quit TMC comes after months of “growing rift” between him and Mamata as the latter was seen sidelining the Rajya Sabha MP. He was recently removed from various party posts recently. According to IE, Roy was responsible for the expansion of the party and managing TMC in the state and beyond. he was also instrumental in making strategy of the party, especially in 2014 general elections.
Should he join the BJP, the saffron party may get a leadership boost in its effort to sweep West Bengal off the feet of Mamata.