Calcutta, May 11: Bengal Congress president Pranab Mukherjee today put in his papers taking the blame for the party’s “disastrous performance”.
“I sent my resignation to Congress president Sonia Gandhi soon after the results were announced. I cannot disown my responsibility for the party’s dismal performance,” Mukherjee told The Telegraph over the phone from Delhi.
The high command has not accepted the defence minister’s resignation as the Congress’s Bengal president.
Sources said a “comprehensive” view would be taken of all the states and the roles played by their presidents and the other functionaries before charting the course of action.
Mukherjee said it was up to the party president to take a decision “but I feel I should not stick to the post as I had failed to steer the party to victory”.
Mukherjee took over as the state Congress president in 1998 when Somen Mitra resigned following the party’s debacle in the Lok Sabha polls.
Mamata Banerjee and six other Trinamul Congress candidates had won the 1998 Lok Sabha elections defeating Congress nominees.
After he finished his six-year term, Mukherjee was reappointed state chief.
“Feuds within the party”, he admitted today, had taken their toll.
Detractors accuse Mukherjee of “not doing justice” to his state job. “Pranabda should have given more time to the Bengal unit,” a senior party functionary said today.