“Dear Mamata Banerjee ji, please accept my resignation from the All India Trinamool Congress (AITC). I want to thank you for the warm welcome accorded to me, and for your affection and courtesies. I look forward to remaining in touch. Wishing you all the best,” said Varma said in a Twitter post. Varma, who was a Rajya Sabha MP from Janata Dal (United) joined TMC in November 2021. He had also been the national general secretary of Janata Dal (United). Prior to joining politics, Varma served as an Indian Foreign Service Officer.
Verma’s resignation sparked speculation that he might rejoin his former party JD(U). The development comes two days after Nitish Kumar-led JD(U) broke ties with the Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) and joined hands with Rashtriya Janata Dal (RJD) to form the Mahagathbandhan government in Bihar. Nitish Kumar was sworn chief minister for a record eighth time on Wednesday after he resigned from the post a day earlier and quit the BJP-led National Democratic Alliance (NDA). RJD leader Tejashwi Yadav took oath as deputy chief minister.
The Nitish Kumar-led Mahagathbandhan government in Bihar will go for a floor test on August 24 to prove its majority in the state assembly. The decision to hold the floor test on August 24 and make a suitable recommendation for convening the state assembly was taken at a cabinet meeting attended by Kumar and Yadav on Wednesday. Sources said that expansion of the cabinet is likely to take place on August 16 and RJD will have more ministers than the Janata Dal-United.
Mahagathbandhan or Grand Alliance has the support of 164 members in the assembly. Nitish Kumar broke his alliance with the BJP for the second time in eight years on Tuesday before joining hands with RJD and other parties in the Mahagathbandhan including the Congress and Left parties. The Grand Alliance also has the support of Hindustan Awam Morcha (HAM), which has four MLAs in the Assembly. BJP has accused Nitish Kumar of “disrespecting” the mandate given by the people of Bihar. BJP and JD-U had fought the assembly polls together in 2020. Nitish Kumar was made Chief Minister though the BJP won more seats.
Sources said that Congress is likely to have 2-3 representatives in the cabinet and HAM may get one berth.