Amid reports of infighting within the West Bengal BJP and turncoats expressing their wish to return to Trinamool Congress (TMC), a BJP MP from the state said “those who have no spine” will make efforts to rejoin the ruling party.
BJP MP Saumitra Khan’s remarks came hours after party leader Rajib Banerjee on Tuesday said “people will not take kindly to threats of President’s rule” against a government elected with a huge mandate.
Mr Khan, in a social media post, said, “Remaining silent when 42 BJP workers have been killed indicates support for the ruling party… Are you seeking re-entry into your old party because you could not become a minister?”
Rajib Banerjee, a former minister in the Mamata Banerjee cabinet, joined the BJP before the assembly elections, but failed to retain the Domjur seat in Howrah district, from where he was fielded by the BJP.
The former legislator, however, refused to elaborate on Tuesday’s comment, maintaining that he had said what he wanted to.
Meanwhile, posters proclaiming “those who betray Mamata Banerjee have no place in Bengal” appeared on Wednesday at a few places in Domjur. It is not immediately known who put up the posters.
“(Traitor) Mir Jafar will not be allowed to be back in Domjur,” one of the posters, which claimed to be placed on behalf of local TMC workers, read.
Several TMC turncoats have, over the past few weeks, expressed their willingness to rejoin the Mamata Banerjee camp — prominent among them being former MLAs Sonali Guha and Dipendu Biswas.
Some others have also been reportedly sending feelers to the party leadership, hoping to return.
With TMC MP Abhishek Banerjee recently visiting senior BJP leader Mukul Roy’s ailing wife in hospital, speculation is rife about a possible change in equation between them.
Mukul Roy was conspicuous by his absence in Tuesday’s meeting called by the state BJP leadership.
State BJP president Dilip Ghosh has also been facing protests at different places from disgruntled grassroots workers, who have alleged that turncoats were responsible for the party’s poor show in the assembly elections.
There had also been protests at the state BJP offices before the polls over tickets being given to some turncoats soon after joining the party.