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Tapas Roy quits as TMC MLA, sparks BJP entry buzz

Source: PTI   -  Edited By: Hemant Waje
March 04, 2024 15:39 IST
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Dealing a blow to the Mamata Banerjee-led Trinamool Congress, senior party leader Tapas Roy on Monday resigned as an MLA, ahead of the scheduled announcement of the Lok Sabha polls.

IMAGE: Tapas Roy's resignation gave rise to fervent speculations on whether the senior leader would quit the TMC altogether and join the BJP, or for that matter, any other opposition party in the state. Photograph: ANI on X

Roy, TMC's deputy chief whip in the West Bengal assembly and a legislator from the Baranagar constituency of north Kolkata, submitted his resignation to Speaker Biman Banerjee in the afternoon minutes after expressing his "deep disappointment and hurt” with his party and its supremo Mamata Banerjee for “deserting him during trying circumstances".

Roy's resignation gave rise to fervent speculations on whether the senior leader would quit the TMC altogether and join the BJP, or for that matter, any other opposition party in the state.

Roy, on his part, maintained that he would take those decisions in “due time”.

He quit as a legislator despite minister Bratya Basu and former TMC spokesperson Kunal Ghosh rushing to his residence on Monday morning in their last-ditch effort to pacify and dissuade him from carrying out his decision to resign.

Roy has been at loggerheads with the party's Lok Sabha MP from the North Kolkata constituency Sudip Bandyopadhyay and was reportedly maintaining distance from the party for a while now, which included staying away from his constituency.


Roy, while speaking to media persons at his Bowbazar residence in central Kolkata, slammed the party leadership for not standing by him when his residence was raided by the Enforcement Directorate (ED) on January 12 this year.

“Chief Minister Mamata Banerjee stood in the assembly and said that the ED was targeting Shajahan Sheikh. I was expecting her to speak a word or two about the raids at my place which devastated my family. But not a word was spoken,” Roy said, dripping with hurt.

While claiming he has remained "spotless and free of corruption" during his entire political career, he alleged: “I have reasons to believe that a section of my own party leaders were responsible for orchestrating the ED operation at my residence. I was devastated to know that some of them were rejoicing when my house was being raided and my family members were suffering deep trauma.”

Expressing his gratitude for the “opposition party leaders who reached out to him during the raid and offered solidarity” the senior leader said, “For reasons unknown to me, no leader from my party has bothered to get in touch with me. Fifty-two days have passed since the raids, yet I haven't received a single phone call from by supreme leader offering her reassurance.”

“I am really disappointed with the way the party is functioning. I am fed up with so many allegations of corruption levelled against the party and the government. I also do not support the way the issue of Sandeshkhali was handled,” he said while maintaining that the dual issues of corruption and Sandeshkhali were the primary triggers for his decision to quit.

Roy's move came less than a week after Kunal Ghosh tendered his resignation from the dual positions of TMC spokesperson and state secretary.

Referring to Ghosh's efforts to dissuade him from quitting, Roy smirked and said, “At the time when Kunal was trying to convince me not to leave, he was slapped with a show-cause notice by TMC general secretary Subrata Bakshi. Such is this party.”

Roy added: “Those in the party who should be suspended, show-caused and expelled are thriving happily in their positions. It's becoming untenable for me to work under such circumstances.”

Asserting that the “insults, ignominy and indifference” he suffered in the Trinamool Congress, the leader said he has been a "loyal soldier of the party for last 25 years".

"But I never got my dues or the respect I deserved," he conveyed.

Roy, a former leader of Chhatra Parishad, the students' wing of the Congress, joined Mamata Banerjee during the early days of the Trinamool Congress at the turn of the last century.

A five-time MLA from north Kolkata, Roy has represented constituencies like Vidyasagar and Burra Bazar before tightening his political grip on Baranagar where he remained undefeated since 2011.

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Source: PTI  -  Edited By: Hemant Waje© Copyright 2024 PTI. All rights reserved. Republication or redistribution of PTI content, including by framing or similar means, is expressly prohibited without the prior written consent.