Mamata asks dissident leader to quit Rajya Sabha

Bengal Chief Minister and Trinamool Congress supremo Mamata Banerjee has reportedly asked dissident party MP Kunal Ghosh to resign from the Rajya Sabha. The chief minister, who is on a four-day tour of districts, has passed on the message to Ghosh.

Though Ghosh was not available for comments, party insiders said the decision to axe him was taken at the highest level. There were several complaints against him, they said. “While handling Saradha Group’s media ventures, he thought himself to be all-powerful. He tried to poison the ears of the senior leadership against some people. Most leaders dislike him but he ingratiated himself with the top leadership, so they kept quiet,” said a Trinamool leader.

Sources said while the party leadership did not issue a show-cause notice because of municipal polls, Banerjee has directed Ghosh to resign from the Rajya Sabha or face dire consequences. “The message is clear. If he does not resign, Kunal might even face arrest for his involvement in the Saradha chit fund scam,” a Trinamool minister said.

The police have in possession some incriminating documents suggesting Ghosh’s involvement in the scam. They added that in case the show-cause notices are issued, those sent to other dissidents, Tapas Pal and Satabdi Roy, will be “different” from the one to Ghosh. Pal and Roy, who were also present at an event where Ghosh assailed the party’s policies, were mild in their criticism. But Ghosh had gone all out against the party. 

Meanwhile, Ghosh is learnt to have written to party general secretary Mukul Roy. “He has demanded an internal inquiry commission. His public statement that he would call a press conference if arrested,” a senior Trinamool leader said.

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