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Ex-BJP leader Babul Supriyo joins TMC a month after “quitting politics”

By Saima Siddiqui 
Updated Date

Kolkata: Bhartiya Janata Party’s (BJP) former Union Minister and sitting MP, Babul Supriyo, on Saturday, joined West Bengal Chief Minister Mamata Banerjee’s Trinamool Congress (TMC), two months after he was asked to resign as junior minister in the Environment Ministry and a month after announcing his “exit” from the politics alleging not to join any other party. Later, he amended his plans and said he would remain a Member of Parliament.

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“If opportunity comes your way, you should decide, and I have decided to take this,” Mr Supriyo told reporters today after joining the Trinamool.

“Today, in the presence of National General Secretary Abhishek Banerjee and RS MP Derek O’Brien, former Union Minister and sitting MP Babul Supriyo joined the Trinamool family. We take this opportunity to extend a very warm welcome to him!” Trinamool said in an official statement.

Mr Supriyo was seen to be upset after he was made to quit as Union Minister in the government led by Prime Minister Narendra Modi, who refreshed the cabinet by appointing 43 new names in July. Supriyo said he had been having differences in opinion with certain BJP leaders ahead of the West Bengal Assembly polls. The ‘infighting’ between senior leaders, he added, was causing harm to the party. In his initial Facebook post, he clarified that he had no plans of joining a rival political party, only to edit out that part later

Supriyo, who was a harsh critic of Bengal Chief Minister Mamata Banerjee, had touted Bengal election verdict as a “historic mistake” made by people. “Neither will I congratulate Mamata Banerjee for her win in Bengal nor do I wish to say that I ‘respect’ the people’s verdict because I sincerely think that people of Bengal made a historic mistake by not giving Bharatiya Janata Party a chance and by electing this corrupt, incapable, dishonest government and the cruel lady back to power!! Yes, as a law-abiding citizen, I shall ‘obey’ the decision taken by the people in a democratic country. That’s it!! Nothing more-Nothing less!!” he wrote in a post just after the election results were declared. However, he deleted this post later.

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Notably, Supriyo is the fifth BJP leader – the four others were BJP MLAs – to join TMC after Ms Banerjee’s party won the state assembly election in May and retained power.

Trinamool leader Kunal Ghosh today said more BJP leaders are in talks to join the party. “Many BJP leaders are in communication with Trinamool leadership. They are not satisfied with BJP. One (Mr Supriyo) joined today, another wants to join tomorrow. This process will go on. Wait and watch,” Mr Ghosh said to media.

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