The shadow of recent run-ins between the West Bengal governor and the Mamata Banerjee government fell on the Republic Day programme here, when Jagdeep Dhankhar and the chief minister came face to face at the venue. Though Banerjee greeted Dhankhar when the latter approached her after reaching the venue, the natural warmth of the Trinamool Congress supremo was clearly missing.
Banerjee was seen not getting up from her chair until the governor came close to her. It was seen that at one point of time the CM turned her face away when Dhankhar was seen saying something to her.
At the photo session, Banerjee kept a distance from the governor and stood close to state assembly Speaker Biman Banerjee with whom Dhankhar had a spat on the previous day. While speaking to the media after paying floral tributes at the statue of B R Ambedkar on the Assembly premises on National Voters Day, Dhankhar not only castigated the speaker and the chief minister but also described the political condition in West Bengal as horrible and frightening He had come down heavily on the Speaker, accusing him of violating constitutional norms and not providing information sought by him, including details of the assembly resolution on the extension of BSF's area of operation.
Reacting to Dhankhar's accusations, the Speaker had said it was "extremely discourteous" of the governor to have made such remarks. Dhankhar has had several run-ins with the West Bengal government over various issues including appointment of vice chancellors of state universities and asking the chief secretary and police chiefs to appear before him. Later, Leader of Opposition in the state assembly Suvendu Adhikari of the BJP alleged that the chief minister did not maintain protocol by not receiving the governor at the Republic Day event.
"Arrogance of @MamataOfficial vs Humility of @jdhankhar1 at Republic Day function. A new low in observance of protocol and propriety by Chief Minister Mamata Banerjee," Adhikari tweeted. He asked: "Is it because there are no answers to the tough questions asked by Hon'ble Governor?" Reacting to Adhikari's allegation, TMC spokesperson Kunal Ghosh claimed that the BJP leader is a frustrated person as he had left the Trinamool Congress and joined the BJP expecting many things and to escape from the raids by central agencies. "But he can see that the party is now disintegrating quickly (in the state)," Ghosh said.