Kolkata: Former West Bengal Chief Secretary Alapan Bandopadhyay on Thursday replied to the show-cause notice by the Centre. This notice was issued to him on May 28 under the Disaster Management Act regarding his absence from the review meeting on the cyclone with Prime Minister Narendra Modi.

According to a high-ranking official in the secretariat, Bandopadhyay, in his reply, said that on the instructions of Chief Minister Mamata Banerjee, he did not attend that meeting to review the cyclone-hit Digha. Digha is a popular sea resort town in East Medinipur district.

On May 31, the Union Home Ministry had given a show-cause notice to Bandopadhyay under strict provisions of the Disaster Management Act. This provision has talked about a jail term of up to two years.

This notice was issued amid a tussle between the Center and the Mamata Banerjee government. Bandopadhyay was due to retire as chief secretary on May 31, but the state recently sought permission to extend his tenure by three months due to his crucial role during the Covid pandemic and it was granted.

But the controversy erupted after he and Chief Minister Mamata Banerjee did not attend the Prime Minister’s cyclone review meeting and the Center directed Bandopadhyay’s transfer.

After this, West Bengal Chief Minister Mamata Banerjee had said that Bandopadhyay has retired and he is being appointed as an advisor for the next three years.

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