The Telegraph
Since 1st March, 1999
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Rebel punished, Mamata returns to CPM hunt

July 1: After silencing detractors by suspending MLA Dipak Ghosh, Mamata Banerjee today sought to remind the Left Front government her NDA connections by organising a central team to take stock of the CPM’s “terror tactic”.

A team led by BJP MP Kirit Somaiya visited several places in East Midnapore and heard complaints on the “terror unleashed by the CPM” before and after the panchayat polls in May.

Ghosh was suspended by the Trinamul Congress disciplinary committee yesterday. The MLA from Mahishadal had questioned some of Mamata’s decisions in a letter that he circulated among other party MLAs.

He said in Calcutta this evening that he was yet to receive any intimation from the party on his suspension. “I learned from the media that I have been suspended. But where is the letter' Give it to me within 48 hours or I will contemplate legal action,” Ghosh said.

He, however, sugarcoated the warning to the party leadership with a rejoinder. “Legal action does not necessarily mean that I will move court. There are legal matters within the party also,” said the suspended leader.

Ghosh had opposed his leaders’ decision to boycott the Assembly and Mamata’s quitting the Union Cabinet months before the elections in 2001. A section of Trinamul legislators had indicated their support for some of Ghosh’s arguments.

But the disciplining of Ghosh seemed to have an effect on those who were rallying around the contents of the rebellious letter. MLAs Saugata Roy, Ashoke Deb, Nirbed Roy, Arunava Ghosh and Kashinath Misra, who had opposed the boycott of the Assembly, remained quiet today.

The three-member NDA team visited Khejuri, Heria and Kalinagar in East Midnapore and took notes on complaints about “CPM atrocities on Trinamul supporters”. The team will visit Nadia tomorrow to record eye-witness accounts of the “terror”.

The 25-car convoy, however, could not visit south Contai today as it got stuck in a muddy road near Bhaja Cahuli.

Somaiya said the “political mafia” had taken control of the state and there was no democracy left. “I will submit my report to the NDA chairman, the Prime Minister and the Election Commission,” he added.

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