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Trinamul puts rebel on notice

Calcutta, June 26: The Trinamul Congress today served a showcause notice to MLA Dipak Ghosh for going public with his “list of complaints” against party chief Mamata Banerjee.

The legislator had also opposed Mamata’s decision to boycott the monsoon session of the Assembly to protest the CPM’s “terror tactic” during the panchayat polls last month. Ghosh, a former bureaucrat and MLA from Mahishadal, circulated a letter to all party MLAs yesterday, asking them to oppose the decision to boycott the Assembly. He also criticised some of Mamata’s decisions, including the one to quit as railway minister.

The letter, however, elicited little response. Trinamul MLAs stayed away from the House today. On her arrival from Delhi this evening, Mamata endorsed the boycott and said: “What the leaders have decided is the party’s stand.”

At the Assembly this morning, chief minister Buddhadeb Bhattacharjee urged the Trinamul MLAs to return to the House. “It will be better if they (the Trinamul MLAs) join the proceedings. I hope they will join soon,” he said.

Speaker Hashim Abdul Halim said the Trinamul MLAs were enjoying facilities arranged by the government and saw no point in their staying away from the Assembly. “They are staying at the MLA hostel and the state guest house. So, what reason can be there to boycott the House'” he asked.

Earlier today, a clutch of senior Trinamul MLAs, including leader of Opposition Pankaj Banerjee, chief whip in the Assembly Sobhandeb Chattopadhyay, mayor of Calcutta Subrata Mukherjee and Partha Chatterjee, met at the party headquarters in Topsia and decided to serve Ghosh the showcause notice.

The meeting also reaffirmed the party’s decision to stay away from the House.

“Those who doubt the party decisions can resign and get re-elected. What Ghosh has written in his letter is offensive and objectionable to the party as well as our leader Mamata Banerjee. He has questioned decisions taken by the party and has made sarcastic comments about our topmost leader. After receiving a reply to the showcause notice within a week, we will refer the case to our disciplinary committee,” said Mukherjee.

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