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How BJP’s 'Pied Piper' Mukul Roy Turned into Mamata Banerjee’s Worst Nightmare

This ‘Pied piper’ of Kanchrapara in North 24 Parganas, who managed to lure more than 60 TMC members tothe BJP within two days, did what he had promised when he was sidelined by the TMC.

Sujit Nath | News18.com

Updated:May 29, 2019, 11:26 PM IST
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How BJP’s 'Pied Piper' Mukul Roy Turned into Mamata Banerjee’s Worst Nightmare
File image of former Trinamool Congress leader Mukul Roy. (PTI)
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Kolkata: As the Modi wave seems to have hit the Mamata Banerjee-led Trinamool Congress (TMC) with a mass defection of its leaders, it is the BJP’s Mukul Roy who has emerged as the saffron party's asset in West Bengal and has been keeping ‘Didi’ on tenterhooks.

This ‘Pied piper’ of Kanchrapara in North 24 Parganas, who managed to lure more than 60 TMC members to the party's fold within two days, did what he had promised after he was sidelined by the TMC.

“People will always remember all-rounder Garry Sobers whenever they will discuss cricket. Similarly, till the existence of the TMC, people will remember me,” Roy had then said in Delhi.

Roy remembers the analogy. “I was right. People in Bengal are fed up with Mamata Banerjee. The TMC is now suffering from a cancer and, therefore, people are leaving,” he said.

“Garry Sobers was an all-rounder, but later he developed the skill to bowl chinaman and googlies to get wickets. This was his talent. I am trying to bowl chinaman and googlies,” Roy told News18.

“Mark my words, very soon the TMC will not even be the opposition party in Bengal. This is going to be a reality. From June onwards, there will more surprises for the TMC,” he added.

On September 25, 2017, in a major setback for the TMC, Roy resigned from the party’s working committee.

Addressing a press conference at Nizam Palace in Kolkata then, Roy – once close to Mamata– had said he would resign from the primary membership and as a Rajya Sabha MP.

Roy's resignation had come days after Banerjee in a core committee meeting warned party leaders against hobnobbing with BJP leaders in Delhi. At the TMC’s core committee meeting, the party supremo had said those who wanted to join other parties were free to move but no anti-party activities would be tolerated.

On August 30, 2017, Roy was removed from the chairman’s post of the standing committee on transport, tourism and culture in the Rajya Sabha for his alleged proximity with BJP leaders in Delhi.

Since Roy was questioned by the CBI in connection with the Saradha Ponzi scam in 2015, his relationship with Banerjee had turned bitter as he had reportedly assured full cooperation to the probe agency.

When the TMC was formed in 1997, Roy was among the first leaders to join the party. He was the non-executive director of the United Bank of India (UBI) from 2002 to 2005.

In April 2006, he became the member of Rajya Sabha from West Bengal and was later appointed as a member of the committee on Urban Development in August 2006. The same year, he became a member of the consultative committee in the Ministry of Home Affairs.

For Banerjee, Roy was the most trusted party worker and had actively worked for her in protesting against the land acquisition at Singur and Nandigram.

In April 2008, Banerjee made him the party's All India General Secretary and the next year he became the Minister of State in the Shipping Ministry.

| Edited by: Sana Fazili
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