Why Mamata Banerjee fought with Centre for Alapan Bandopadhyay

West Bengal Chief Minister Mamata Banerjee appears to have received the battle with the Narendra Modi authorities of the Centre over senior bureaucrat Alapan Bandopadhyay. Mamata Banerjee didn’t launch Alapan Bandopadhyay, who requested retirement from the Indian Administrative Service (IAS), and created a brand new place for his continuation within the West Bengal authorities. All of this occurred towards the course of the Narendra Modi authorities.

However, final sentence on the Mamata versus Modi over Alapan Bandopadhyay is but to be written. The Department of Personnel and Training (DoPT) — that governs central authorities officers together with these belonging to the IAS — has issued a show-cause discover to Alapan Bandopadhyay. The DoPT capabilities underneath the Ministry of Personnel and Public Grievances, a portfolio underneath the cost of Prime Minister Narendra Modi.


On May 24, the Mamata Banerjee authorities sought extension of three months for Alapan Bandopadhya, then chief secretary of West Bengal, within the view of prevailing Covid-19 scenario. The Centre agreed. The Appointments Committee of the Cabinet (ACC), which incorporates Union Home Minister Amit Shah, granted the extension.

Four days later, PM Modi was in West Bengal to survey the injury brought on by Cyclone Yaas. PM Modi was to carry a assessment assembly over Cyclone Yaas. Mamata Banerjee was imagined to attend alongside with Alapan Bandopadhyay.

Mamata Banerjee’s friend-turned-foe Suvendu Adhikari was current within the assembly which Mamata Banerjee and Alapan Bandhopadhyay skipped. They as a substitute met PM Modi individually to handover a Yaas resettlement proposal with a requirement of Rs 20,000 crore.

The similar day — March 28, the Centre directed Alapan Bandopadhyay to report to New Delhi. He didn’t as Mamata Banerjee refused to launch him and shot off a letter to PM Modi.

The Centre subsequent wrote to the Mamata Banerjee authorities asking to alleviate Alapan Bandopadhyay. His extension was rescinded. The Mamata Banerjee authorities did not pay heed to the Centre’s directive. The legislation is open for interpretation as to who prevails if an IAS officer is posted with a state authorities.

Alapan Bandopadhyay requested retirement. Mamata Banerjee accepted and created the submit of special adviser to the West Bengal chief minister with three-year tenure.


Depending upon how one perceives, Alapan Bandopadhyay is seen as “a pliant officer” or “a sharp bureaucrat with extreme flexibility”. Known to be a really articulate officer with supreme command over Bengali and English, Alapan Bandopadhyay started his profession as a journalist with the Anandbazar Patrika.

As a 1987-batch IAS officer of West Bengal cadre, Alapan Bandopadhyay earned a status for himself as a bureaucrat who serves his political grasp in implementing authorities’s insurance policies.

By the time, Mamata Banerjee introduced an finish to the Left Front authorities in West Bengal in 2011, Alapan Bandopadhyay was thought-about one of many officers trusted probably the most by then Chief Minister Buddhadeb Bhattacharjee.

Among the positions that Alapan Bandopadhyay held underneath the Buddhadeb Bhattacharjee authorities was the submit of Kolkata municipal commissioner. This place has been a mirrored image of confidence a Bengal CM reposes within the beholder.


After the change of presidency and ruling political ideology in West Bengal, Alapan Bandopadhyay had a clean transition endearing himself to the brand new rulers as effectively. When Suvendu Adhikari, now a BJP chief, was with Mamata Banerjee and the transport minister in Bengal, Alapan Bandopadhyay was the transport secretary.

Suvendu Adhikari lashed out at Mamata Banerjee after she reportedly saved PM Modi ready for the assessment assembly on May 28 however gave nearly a clear chit to Alapan Bandopadhyay. Suvendu Adhikari referred to him as “Alapan Babu” (Dear Alapan) and known as him “an efficient officer” who “always did what he was asked to do”.

The Mamata Banerjee authorities made Alapan Bandopadhyay dwelling secretary in 2019 changing Atri Bhattacharya, then thought-about very near Mamata Banerjee.


Alapan Bandopadhyay has dealt with three of the most important challenges that the Mamata Banerjee authorities has confronted in recent times — Cyclone Amphan, Covid-19 and Cyclone Yaas.

Not solely this, when Mamata Banerejee confronted politically extra essential and daunting problem after 2019 Lok Sabha election shock given by the rise of the BJP, Alapan Bandopadhyay is claimed to have come up with Duare Sarkar (authorities on the doorstep) scheme.

Besides her personal streetfighter spirit, rise of Covid-19 through the election and strategist Prashant Kishor’s poll-management, Duare Sarkar helped Mamata Banerjee attain out to folks’s households and retain energy in Bengal.


Alapan Bandopadhyay’s spouse Sonali Chakravarti, an academician in political science, is the vice-chancellor of the University of Calcutta, one in all 27 state-run universities in West Bengal. She was appointed the VC in 2017 after the submit had been vacant for two years. Alapan Bandopadhyay was the transport secretary then serving to out Suvendu Adhikari.

Just a few months in the past, Sonali Chakravarti skipped a perform within the University of Calcutta the place West Bengal Governor Jagdeep Dhankar was the chief visitor. Sonali Chakravarti mentioned she was “unwell”.

Dhankar, the chancellor, mentioned Sonali Chakravarti was a “gracious woman” however “chained” by the Mamata Banerjee authorities. Jagdeep Dhankar and Mamata Banerjee had been engaged in a disagreement for a number of months resulting in West Bengal Assembly election 2021.

Suvendu Adhikari’s touch upon Alapan Bandopadhyay within the present tug-of-war between the Modi authorities and the Mamata authorities was not a lot totally different from Dhankar’s in essesnce.

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