Kolkata, May 25: West Bengal planning minister Rachhpal Singh on Monday courted controversy after one of his security guards was caught on tape while tying his shoelaces at the state secretariat, Nabanna.
Singh, a Trinamool Congress MLA from Tarakeshwar and a former IPS officer, drew flak as TV channels broadcast video footage showing a security officer tying the shoelaces after Singh had paid homage to sculptor and painter Ramkinkar Baij on his birth anniversary at the secretariat.
"Such a thing is unthinkable in the 21st century. This is reflective of the political bankruptcy of the Trinamool Congress and its leaders," CPI-M leader and former Kolkata mayor Bikash Ranjan Bhattacharya said.
Social activist Miratun Nahar and theatre personality Kaushik Sen too condemned the incident.
Kolkata: Security guard ties shoelaces of Rachpal Singh (Minister of Planning & Implementation, WB) pic.twitter.com/chHqb5e8Tb— ANI (@ANI_news) May 25, 2015
"Unless those surrounding ministers and influential people stop resorting to sycophancy, such incidents will continue to happen. I also have serious doubts if Singh is aware about Baij or his exploits," said Sen.
Former police officer Samir Ganguly said he was not surprised by the incident.
"Sycophancy is a part of the department. There are many who shamelessly run errands for their superiors, hoping for a better posting and promotion," said Ganguly, a former deputy commissioner of city police.