SILIGURI: West Bengal Governor Jagdeep Dhankhar on Tuesday expressed displeasure as a minister and government officials were not present at a meeting convened by him and said it does not fit in the culture of the state.
This was Dhankhar's first visit outside Kolkata and he said he was not happy with the reception he was given by the Mamata Banerjee government.
"Honourable minister Goutam Deb, principal secretary of the home department Alapan Bandyopadhyay were supposed to be there (at the meeting). I imagine their absence must be on account of unavoidable state commitments and I would try to connect with them on some other occasion," the governor told reporters.
Trinamool Congress MLA and Tourism Minister Goutam Deb, principal secretary of home department Alapan Bandyopadhyay, district magistrate of Darjeeling and senior police officials of the region were absent at the meeting.
"I have seen virtual total absence of the state administration here. I do believe the DM must have on leave for a proper reason that can happen with all of us. On the police side also the man-in-charge was nowhere to be seen. I never wish to hold closed-door meetings. So the state administration should have been there," he added.
Dhankhar said he was not a protocol-oriented person, but the presence of the officials would have been beneficial for the people.
"I would have been very happy that when the first servant of the state is making his first visit outside Kolkata, the state administration could have been little more involved," he said.
The governor said it does not matter to him who comes to attend his meeting and who does not.
"(But) the lukewarm stand of the state today is a cause of worry to me because I find it not fitting in the culture of West Bengal. This cannot be the kind of reception given to the governor for the first time when he goes to a place like Siliguri," he said.
Dhankhar inaugurated the newly-constructed building of the Indian Chamber of Commerce here.
He had convened a meeting with the district magistrate of Darjeeling, the MP and the MLAs of the district, the Mayor of Siliguri Ashok Bhattacharya as well as Siliguri Zilla Sabhadipati, and Mahakuma Parishad.
Bhattacharya, who belongs to the CPI(M), and Darjeeling MP Raju Bista attended the meeting with the governor who left for New Delhi from here.