Trinamool Congress MLA Sabyasachi Dutta on Tuesday (1 October) crossed over to the Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) in the presence of Union Home Minister Amit Shah at the Netaji Indoor stadium here.
Dutta, who represents the Rajarhat-New Town constituency in the state Assembly, took the party flag from state BJP President Dilip Ghosh before Shah draped him with a scarf.
In a brief speech, Dutta, a former Mayor of Bidhannagar Municipality, said he that felt proud as an Indian under the leadership of Prime Minister Narendra Modi.
He exhorted Shah to restore sanity in West Bengal after having done the same in Jammu and Kashmir.
"Gaiety pervades Kashmir. People are very happy. Now please restore sanity in Bengal. People here are not at all happy," he said.
Alleging that Bengal was now becoming a second Pakistan, Dutta said, "Please save Bengal and Bengalis."
Backing a National Register of Citizens (NRC) exercise in Wets Bengal, he said: "Those who are trying to fragmentise the country have no place in our land. We respect (A P J) Abul Kalam, but we consider Ajmal Kasab as a terrorist."
Observers feel Dutta's presence could bolster the saffron outfit's strength in the city's northeast fringes of Rajarhat and Salt Lake.