Bengal BJP in fix over inducting tainted TMC leader

Bengal BJP in fix over inducting tainted TMC leader

Former Kolkata Municipal Corporation mayor Sovan Chatterjee and his Professor Baisakhi Banerjee join Bharatiya Janata Party in the presence of party's working president J P Nadda, at the BJP HQ in New Delhi on Aug 14, 2019. (PTI File Photo)

West Bengal BJP leadership is in two minds over the induction of former Trinamool Congress (TMC) Minister and Mayor of Kolkata Sovan Chatterjee.

Sources in the BJP revealed that a section of the state leadership is apprehensive that the induction of Chatterjee into the party may blunt its corruption charge against the TMC and have an adverse effect on the political mileage it has gained in the Lok Sabha elections.

The apprehension in the state BJP leadership stemmed from the fact that Chatterjee was purportedly seen taking cash in the Narada sting operation footage.

“BJP was the most vocal among the Opposition parties in demanding stringent legal action against those whose name came up in the Narada sting operation case. But now how will we explain the induction of Chatterjee to the people,” said a senior state BJP leader.

However, the state leaders who sided with the defection strategy of Mukul Roy countered the argument saying that it was necessary to create an impression among people that the TMC was crumbling down and has been outwitted by the saffron party.

State BJP president Dilip Ghosh, known to be sceptical of Roy’s defection strategy, has recently issued a diktat that no leaders from another party can join the state unit in Delhi without his permission. However, during Chatterjee’s joining, Ghosh was not present in Delhi.

“I was busy with other party works and hence was unable to attend the event. But I had been duly informed about his induction into the party,” said Ghosh.

He also brushed aside the question on the state BJP projecting Chatterjee as it mayoral candidate in the next Kolkata Municipal Corporation (KMC) elections.

“He (Chatterjee) just joined the party. We will take a call on such issues later,” said Ghosh.

Ghosh has repeatedly made it clear that he supports the induction of leaders from other parties into BJP due to lack of experienced leaders in the state unit.

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