Retired Bengal Chief Secretary Alapan Bandyopadhyay appointed Mamata's chief advisor
Escalating a feud between West Bengal Chief Minister Mamata Banerjee and Prime Minister Narendra Modi, Alapan Bandyopadhyay was appointed as the formers' chief advisor. Bandyopadhyay retired as the Bengal Chief Secretary earlier in the day and the central government appointed Hari Krishna Dwivedi to succeed him. Earlier in the day, it was reported that Bandyopadhyay's tenure would be extended by three months.
Addressing a press conference on Monday, Banerjee said that Bandyopadhyay has retired as the Chief Secretary and will start working as the CM's chief advisor from Tuesday for a tenure of three years. The CM also announced that Dwivedi has been made the new state Chief Secretary, while BP Gopalika has been made the new state Home Secretary.
The CM was quoted as saying by NDTV, "This is vendetta. I have never seen such a heartless PM. Just because they want to attack the CM, they attack the Chief Secretary." "I have decided we need his service for the COVID-19 pandemic. For COVID-19 and Cyclone Yaas, he must continue his service to the poor, the state, the country, the affected people..."
Bandyopadhyay had been asked to serve the Centre in Delhi. On Monday, the Centre had asked Bandyopadhyay to report to North Block on Tuesday. Earlier, Banerjee had written to Modi saying that she would not release Bandyopadhyay "at this critical hour." The Centre had first recalled Bandyopadhyay to Delhi on Friday, hours after Banerjee skipped a review meeting called by Modi on Cyclone Yaas.
Before recalling Bandyopadhyay, the Centre had approved the Bengal government's proposal to extend Bandyopadhyay's tenure by three months till August 31. This approval came on May 24. Bandyopadhyay was earlier scheduled to retire on May 31.