Mitra, considered close to be BJP veteran L.K. Advani, is believed to have been sidelined under the Modi-Shah leadership.
New Delhi: Former Rajya Sabha MP and editor of The Pioneer, Chandan Mitra, has resigned from the BJP and is likely to join Mamata Banerjee-led Trinamool Congress, sources close to him said.
Mitra, considered close to BJP veteran L.K. Advani, has been sidelined under the Modi-Shah leadership, said the sources.
It is believed that the two-time Rajya Sabha MP has submitted his resignation but there is no official confirmation on whether BJP chief Amit Shah has accepted it.
Mitra was nominated to the Rajya Sabha twice — in 2003 and 2016.
In 2014, Mitra was the BJP’s Lok Sabha candidate from the Hooghly constituency in West Bengal, a seat which he lost to a Trinamool Congress candidate.
In a first-person account of his experiences of contesting the election, Mitra refers to his nomination as “accidental,” describing how he sought the advice from “his friend” Arun Jaitley about whether or not he should “take the plunge”.
The day after the decision was made, he also sought the blessings of then party president Rajnath Singh as well as Advani.
While Mitra was a prominent face of the BJP in Delhi circles, he did not shy away from criticising the party when he deemed fit. He became the target of severe trolling on Twitter by Modi supporters after he termed BJP’s online warriors as “those with nothing better to do”.
Mitra was also quoted as saying that the BJP did not adequately focus on the problem faced by sugarcane farmers after the party lost the Kairana bypoll in Uttar Pradesh in May.