In assembly address, Guv Dhankhar sticks to Mamata Banerjee script
Dhankhar did, however, make the point on Thursday that he was well within his rights to suggest changes. When these were turned down by the state government, he stuck to the script given to him.Updated: Feb 07, 2020, 18:36 IST
West Bengal governor Jagdeep Dhankhar on Friday stuck to the text of the speech handed to him by the Mamata Banerjee-led Bengal government for the governor’s address to the state assembly’s first session of the year. Governor Dhankhar had earlier recommended certain changes to the speech but didn’t press the point after the state government declined to take his suggestion.
Dhankhar did, however, make the point on Thursday that he was well within his rights to suggest changes. When these were turned down by the state government, he stuck to the script given to him.
The governor’s address to the state assembly - or the one made by the President to the joint session of Parliament - reflects the policies and programmes of the government.
There had been some concern that the Bengal governor may, like the Kerala Governor Arif Mohammad Khan, spring a surprise and preface portions of the text that he did not approve of with a disclaimer.
Khan had, before reading out the Pinarayi Vijayan government’s views against the amended citizenship law, had made it clear that he disapproved of this portion of the address.
On Friday, Governor Dhankhar and Chief Minister Mamata Banerjee hit pause on their rather acrimonious relations. Mamata Banerjee and speaker Biman Banerjee cheerfully welcomed Dhankhar and they could be seen exchanging pleasantries for quite a bit.
Irrespective of the bonhomie that was on display at the assembly complex, the governor’s decision to summon the three principal accountant generals to his residence at 5 pm has spotlighted the creases in the relationship. The governor’s approval is needed to table the Finance Bill, which is a crucial part of the budget.
“Whether there would be confrontation or not in this session would be clear only after Dhankhar’s meeting with the accountant generals,” said a senior Trinamool Congress (TMC) minister, who did not want to be identified.
Biman Banerjee, the speaker of the Assembly, has said that anything that the governor may say beyond the written speech prepared and approved by the state cabinet would not go on record in the proceedings of the house.
However, in a statement issued in the evening on Thursday, Dhankhar’s press secretary Manab Bandyopadhyay said that the governor will never cross the “Lakshman Rekha” created by the Constitution.