A day after over 50 Trinamool Congress leaders joined the BJP, Mamata Banerjee’s party on Wednesday issued a clarification saying only one suspended MLA joined the saffron party, while the others were from Congress and CPI(M). The TMC added that six councillors joined the BJP but they “were forced at gunpoint to do so”.
In a major jolt to Banerjee, Mukul Roy’s son Subhrangshu along with two Bengal legislators and 50 Trinamool Congress councillors joined the BJP on Tuesday.
#FactCheck One suspended MLA of Trinamool joined BJP yesterday. The others were from Congress and CPI(M). The number of councillors is 6. That too they were forced at gunpoint to do so.— All India Trinamool Congress (@AITCofficial) 29 May 2019
The move came a month after Prime Minister Narendra Modi’s warning to the West Bengal Chief Minister that her MLAs would abandon her after the results of the general elections, adding that 40 of them were already in touch with him. “When the lotus will bloom all over Bengal after May 23, Didi (Banerjee), you will see that your MLAs will also abandon you and run away. Forty of your MLAs are in touch with me even today,” Modi had told an election rally in Hooghly district.
The Trinamool Congress had suspended Bijapur legislator Subhrangshu for six years for anti-party comments, following which he along TMC MLAs Shilbhadra Dutta and Sunil Singh left for Delhi on Monday.
"Now, I will breathe freely. Many in the TMC feel suffocated," Subhrangshu had said after getting suspended. He had claimed that several others from the party will "follow his footsteps".
Mukul Roy, once considered to be the second-in-command of the Trinamool Congress, joined the BJP in November 2017 after a fallout with Banerjee. He is being credited for the stellar show of the BJP in Bengal in the just-concluded Lok Sabha elections.