KOLKATA: Ruling Trinamool Congress MLA Sabyasachi Dutta Tuesday joined BJP in the presence of its national president Amit Shah and urged the Union Home Minister to "cool down" politically volatile Bengal led by the TMC.
Dutta, former Bidhannagar Municipal Corporation Mayor, was handed over the party flag by the BJP state president Dilip Ghosh, at a seminar on NRC presided by Shah.
Later on Shah hugged Dutta and welcomed him to the party fold.
"For me the country and its interests is much bigger than personal or a party's interests. India has achieved new heights under the leadership of Prime minister Narendra Modi," Dutta said.
"I would urge Amit Shahji that the way he ensured Kashmir cool's down, he should also take steps to cool down Bengal. The people of Bengal are yearning for a change and it will happen very soon," he said.
Reacting to the development, TMC secretary-general Partha Chatterjee said the party is not at all bothered about Dutta's switchover to the saffron party.
"We (TMC) have no relation with Dutta for the last several months. It hardly bothers us. Let him go and check which is more powerful, the twin flowers (of TMC) or the single lotus," Chatterjee said.
Dutta, who was at loggerheads with the TMC leadership, resigned from his post as mayor of Bidhannagar Municipal Corporation in July this year.
With Dutta's crossover, a total of eight TMC MLAs have left the party to join the BJP.
Two Congress and CPI(M) MLAs have also become part of the saffron camp, which has made significant inroads in Bengal winning 18 out of a total 42 Lok Sabha seats, only four less than the ruling TMC, in the state.