West Bengal Chief Minister Mamata Banerjee has ordered her top minister and Kolkata Mayor Firhad Hakim to examine disciplinary action against a party legislator for his meeting with BJP leader Mukul Roy on Friday.
Mr Roy met Trinamool MLA Sabyasachi Duta at the latter’s home on Friday evening and spent two hours there, giving rise to speculation that the Trinamool leader might cross over to the BJP ahead of the Lok Sabha polls.
Ms Banerjee has asked Firhad Hakim to summon an emergency meeting of all the councillors of Salt Lake area today and consider action against Mr Dutta. It is not clear if Mr Dutta is also expected to attend the meeting.
“BJP is an all India party. It has all the money but no leaders. So they are going around with a begging bowl, asking everyone, will you be our candidate. The current visit is supposed to have been a personal one. Let’s see,” Firhad Hakim said.
The development comes at a time when another switchover is on the cards. Former Kolkata mayor and minister Sovan Chatterjee and his close confidante Baisakhi Banerjee are reportedly in talks with various political parties. “Yes we are talking to many people and whatever we do, we will do together,” Ms Banerjee is reported to have said.
Both Mukul Roy and Sabyasachi Dutta have maintained that it was a courtesy visit, the timing of the meeting – when the two parties have daggers drawn – is being considered worthy of speculation.
Mr Dutta, MLA from Rajarhat-Newtown seat, is known to have been close to Mr Roy when the latter was in Trinamool and there has been speculation over him switching sides.
One of Mr Roy’s proteges, erstwhile Trinamool MP Soumitra Khan, has recently switched to the BJP.