TMC MP Sisir Adhikari, Suvendu’s father, joins BJP at Shah’s Bengal rally

Suvendu's younger brother Dibyendu, also a TMC MP, is also expected to attend the public meeting

Sisir Adhikari

BJP leader Suvendu Adhikari’s father Sisir Adhikari, a Trinamool Congress MP, joined BJP at Union Home Minister Amit Shah’s rally at Egra in East Medinipur on Sunday, ending months of speculations about the complete Right shift of Adhikaris.

“Save Bengal from atrocities, we’re with you, our family is with you. Jai Siya Ram, Jai Bharat,” he told the rally.

Suvendu’s younger brother Dibyendu Adhikari, also a TMC MP (Tamluk), is also expected to attend the public meeting. Only two days ago, he seemed undecided over joining the BJP, but had said he was not being allowed him to TMC’s programmes for four-five months. Soumendu, another of Adhikari brothers, had joined BJP soon after Suvendu’s defection.

Thus, today’s rally will complete the saffronisation of the entire Adhikari family which holds considerable influence in the two Medinipur districts. This, interestingly, also raises question on the BJP’s anti-parivartantra or anti-dynast credentials, something that the saffron party leadership often boast of while targeting the Gandhis of the Congress.


Sisir, the patriarch of the Adhikari family and Kanthi MP, said he was forced to switch camp, as the ruling party leaders left him with no other option. He said he will put up a formidable fight against the Mamata Banerjee camp to “save the honour of Midnapore.” Earlier too, he had accused the ruling party of “humiliating” him and Suvendu. “Let them (TMC) do what they want, and I will do what I can,” he told reporters here before leaving for Egra.

Suvendu, who was Chief Minister Mamata Banerjee’s local face during the 2007 Nandigram peasant’s movement which catapulted her to power in 2011, had joined the BJP last year. He is now pitted against the Trinamool supremo herself from the Nandigram constituency in the upcoming assembly election in West Bengal.

Standing firm behind son Suvendu, Sisir Adhikari said he will bag the Nandigram seat by a comfortable margin. “Suvendu will win the polls by a huge margin. The TMC will be wiped out of East Midnapore,” the Lok Sabha MP added.

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Speculations of Sisir joining BJP had already been doing rounds following the defection of Suvendu. On March 13, BJP MP from Hooghly and the party’s assembly poll candidate from Chunchura Locket Chatterjee had visited the Adhikari residence and had lunch with him. The septuagenarian leader’s meeting BJP’s Mansukh Mandviya on Saturday had added fuel to the speculation about him attending today’s rally.

While Shah will be addressing at Egra in East Medinipur today, Prime Minister Narendra Modi will be in Bankura district to campaign for the BJP for the upcoming election to the 294-member West Bengal assembly. A day earlier, he had visited Bengal’s Kharagpur for campaigning. The visit of top central leadership on a regular basis has turned on the heat in Bengal where BJP is seeking to end the 10-year rule of Mamata Banerjee-led TMC.

Related news | Nandigram: A close-to-heart, layered battle for Mamata, Suvendu