Ahead of West Bengal assembly polls, another TMC MLA exits party
Kolkata, Feb 02: In yet another backlash for Mamata Banerjee's Trinamool Congress (TMC), the party has lost another MLA. This time, it is two-time legislator from Diamond Harbour, Dipak Haldar, who has walked out.
His decision, which he said was due to "not being allowed to work", immediately fueled speculation of a possible switchover to the BJP, which in recent months has welcomed a swarm of leaders from rival parties in West Bengal.
According to reports, Dipak Haldar is expected to join the BJP this afternoon at a rally in Baruipur in South 24 Parganas district.
However, the TMC has said that he has quit because he was not going to be given a party ticket for the upcoming election due to his non-performance as an MLA.
Earlier, Banerjee had said that those who know that they are not going to be given tickets are leaving and the TMC is not worried about them.
A number of leaders have left the TMC in the past few months for various reasons, with most of them joining the BJP soon after. Till now, at least 18 sitting and former MLAs, including some former cabinet ministers, have shifted loyalties to the Hindutva party.
Five former Trinamool leaders were flown in to New Delhi last Saturday to meet Union Home Minister Amit Shah and join his party.
This is besides leaders from other parties such as the CPM and the Congress, who have, in recent times, joined the BJP which is trying to replace Chief Minister Banerjee's regime. Elections to the 294-member West Bengal assembly are expected to be held in April-May this year.