TMC urges Lok Sabha speaker to disqualify turncoat MPs including Sisir Adhikari

Published on Jun 14, 2021 09:09 PM IST
On Monday, Sudip Bandyopadhyay, leader of the Trinamool Congress (TMC) in Lok Sabha, called up speaker Om Birla and urged him to take action on the petitions he had earlier filed seeking disqualification of Sunil Mondal and Sisir Adhikari who joined the Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) before the recent Bengal assembly polls, HT has learnt
TMC urges Lok Sabha speaker to disqualify turncoat MPs including Sisir Adhikari
TMC urges Lok Sabha speaker to disqualify turncoat MPs including Sisir Adhikari

On Monday, Sudip Bandyopadhyay, leader of the Trinamool Congress (TMC) in Lok Sabha, called up speaker Om Birla and urged him to take action on the petitions he had earlier filed seeking disqualification of Sunil Mondal and Sisir Adhikari who joined the Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) before the recent Bengal assembly polls, HT has learnt.

“The speaker told me that he will form a committee to review the petitions for disqualification and ask the two MPs to appear before it. He asked me when I will be able to travel to Delhi as I have to appear before the committee as well,” Bandyopadhyay told HT.

Bandyopadhyay had called up the speaker on the same issue on June 3. The second call was made on a day when 50 BJP legislators in Bengal met governor Jagdeep Dhankhar and demanded that any MLA who joins the TMC should face action under the anti-defection law passed by the Parliament.

The team was led by Shishir Adhikari’s son Suvendu Adhikari, the leader of the opposition in the legislative assembly. “The anti-defection law applies to all states and Bengal is not an exception. As the Constitutional head of the state, I will ensure that it is enforced,” Dhankhar told the media after the meeting.

Sunil Mondal, TMC Lok Sabha member from the East Burdwan seat, joined the BJP in the presence of Union home minister Amit Shah in December last year.

Sisir Adhikari, who did not formally pick up the BJP flag but shared dais with Prime Minister Narendra Modi during the campaign, is the MP from Contai in East Midnapore district. His eldest son Suvendu defeated Mamata Banerjee from the district’s Nandigram seat by 1958 votes. She has to face the election again to continue as chief minister.

Bandyopadhyay wrote to the speaker on January 4 and May 12, seeking Mondal’s disqualification. The petition regarding Sisir Adhikari was sent on May 17.

On June 3, Bandyopadhyay told Om Birla that the two TMC MPs joined another party in public programmes and there are no doubts about their defection.

The TMC has 22 Lok Sabha MPs since the BJP won 18 seats in 2019. Bengal has 42 seats. Till 2019, the TMC had 34 MPs in the Lower House.

In the assembly polls, the TMC bagged 213 of the state’s 294 seats. The BJP, which had sworn to oust the TMC by winning more than 200 seats, won only 77. However, two BJP MLAs resigned from the assembly to retain their Lok Sabha seats. On Friday, BJP national vice-president Mukul Roy, who won the Krishnanagar North assembly seat, joined the TMC.

On Monday, Suvendu Adhikari said Roy would face action under anti-defection law if he did not resign from the assembly within 24 hours. When asked about the TMC’s demand for disqualification of his father, Adhikari said, “I will not comment on this.”

Sisir Adhikari’s second son, Dibyendu, is the Lok Sabha member from East Midnapore’s Tamluk seat. Though he spoke in support of Suvendu Adhikari on a few occasions he has not joined the BJP.

Sisir Adhikari and Sunil Mondal did not give any reaction.

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