West Bengal Assembly Speaker Biman Bandopadhyay on Wednesday ruled out the possibility of disqualifying Mukul Roy as a member of the Assembly representing the Krishnanagar (North) constituency in Nadia district.
The Speaker also said that Roy continues to be an elected BJP legislator since enough evidence has not been found to prove that Roy has joined any other political party and hence he cannot be disqualified as an MLA under the existing anti-defection law.
Since Roy continues to be an elected BJP legislator, hurdles have been removed for him to continue as the chairman of the Public Accounts Committee (PAC) of the state Assembly. By convention, the chair of PAC chairman is always offered to an MLA from the principal opposition party in the state.
To recall, Roy got elected as a BJP legislator from Krishnanagar (North) in the 2021 Assembly elections. However, days after the results were announced, Roy on June 11, 2021 went to the Trinamool Congress headquarters in Kolkata and re-joined his old party in the presence of Chief Minister Mamata Banerjee, Trinamool’s national general secretary Abhishesk Banerjee and other party leaders.
Soon after that the leader of opposition in West Bengal Assembly, Suvendu Adhikari, appealed to the Speaker to disqualify Roy as an MLA. However, after some rounds of hearing, the Speaker ruled that Roy will continue as a BJP legislator.
Dissatisfied with the ruling, Adhikari approached the Supreme Court. However, the apex court referred the matter to the Calcutta High Court. On April 11, a division bench of Calcutta High Court referred the matter back to the Assembly Speaker with a reconsideration call.
On Wednesday, the Speaker upheld his previous decision.