KOLKATA: West Bengal Advocate General Kishore Datta on Tuesday resigned from his post citing "personal reasons", following which Governor Jagdeep Dhankhar appointed senior counsel Gopal Mukherjee in his place. Datta, who took charge in February 2017, is the fourth advocate general of West Bengal in a row to have resigned from the post during Mamata Banerjee's 10-year rule in the state.
Hours later, Mukherjee was named as the successor of Datta. "In terms of Article 165 (1) of the Constitution of India Governor West Bengal Shri Jagdeep Dhankhar has appointed Shri Gopal Mukherjee, Senior Advocate of High Court at Calcutta, as Advocate General of the State and will hold office 'during the pleasure of the Governor'," Dhankhar tweeted.
Earlier in the day, the governor said in a Twitter post he accepted the resignation of Dutta with immediate effect. Anindya Mitra, the first advocate general to have taken charge after the TMC government came to power in 2011, and his successors Bimal Chatterjee and Jayanta Mitra had also resigned from the post.
"Kishore Dutta is a gentleman. But he could not save the state government from embarrassment in the high court in several cases in the past. So, perhaps, he was forced to resign," BJP MP Arjun Singh said.
Reacting to Singh's comment, Trinamool Congress Deputy Leader in Rajya Sabha Sukhendu Sekhar Roy said, "We didn't have the slightest idea that Arjun Singh is so knowledgeable about happenings in the judiciary."
He said that Dutta resigned on personal grounds and wondered why no question is asked when any top official in the union government resigns.