107 MLAs from TMC, Cong, CPM to join BJP: Mukul Roy

West Bengal BJP leader Mukul Roy. DH file photo

At a time when a tug-of-war over MLAs in Karnataka is creating ripples in national politics, West Bengal BJP leader Mukul Roy said on Saturday that 107 MLAs from across all parties will join the BJP.

“In total 107 MLAs from TMC, Congress and CPI(M) will join BJP in near future,” said Roy.

Roy, a former TMC general secretary, added that a list of such MLAs has been prepared by the BJP leadership and the concerned MLAs are in regular touch with them.

The trend of defection from TMC to the saffron party started days ahead of the Lok Sabha elections with several TMC leaders including the then sitting MLAs and MPs switching sides.

Majority of defections took place due to discontent among lawmakers for not getting a party ticket. During a party rally in April, Prime Minister Narendra Modi claimed that 40 TMC MLAs were in touch with him and will leave TMC after Lok Sabha election results are declared.

However, the TMC leadership scoffed at Roy’s claim. They pointed out that recently 14 TMC councillors of Kancharapara Municipality in North 14 Paraganas who joined BJP have returned to TMC.

"A section of the media refers to a certain person (Roy) as Chanakya. Seems he is made-in-china-Chanakya. He can’t even retain councillors in his own neighbourhood and makes claims of roping in TMC MLAs,” said Abhishek Banerjee, TMC MP and nephew of Mamata Banerjee.

He alleged that those TMC councillors who earlier joined BJP were intimidated by the saffron party to leave TMC.

However, Roy said that the TMC leaders joining BJP and then again returning to their former party is also a part of BJP’s strategy. He also took a dig at West Bengal Chief Minister Mamata Banerjee for appointing poll strategist Prashant Kishor, saying that she is no longer able to run her party.

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