Siliguri, Sept. 3: Nantu Paul will resign from the posts of the chairman of the Siliguri Municipal Corporation and councillor tomorrow as instructed by Trinamul Congress general secretary Mukul Roy, sources in the party said today.
Paul, who was elected the councillor of ward 11 on a Congress ticket, joined Trinamul on September 27 last year. After the switch, he resigned from the post of the chairman and got re-elected earlier this year.
Trinamul sources spoke of two reasons on why the party would have told Paul to quit.
One, that the state government was contemplating dissolving of the SMC board run by the Congress, and appoint an administrator before or after Durga Puja.
Another reason could be the hearing on the case against Paul in Calcutta High Court on Thursday. Sources said Paul may lose the case filed by the Congress in the high court seeking his disqualification under the anti-defection law of West Bengal Municipal Corporation Act, 2006.
A senior leader of the Darjeeling district Trinamul today said Paul had been directed by Roy to step down. “Our party general secretary Mukul Roy, who is touring Kalimpong with Mamata Banerjee, has asked Paul to resign from the posts of the chairman and the councillor.”
Sources close to Paul said he would put in his papers at 11am tomorrow.
Paul refrained from making any direct comment on the resignation. “At present, I am in Kalimpong. I don’t want to say anything about my resignation as it is an internal matter of our party. All I can say is that if I get any such an instruction, I will abide by it,” he said.
The Congress has been boycotting the monthly board meetings of the civic body since April ostensibly to protest against Paul convening the sessions. The party said the impasse at the SMC would end as and when Paul stepped down as the chairman.
“When (Paul) he will not be in the post, our councillors will not have any problem in attending the monthly meetings. It seems that his party has realised the mistake and that is why he has been asked to quit,” said Jeevan Majumdar, the general secretary of the Darjeeling district Congress.
An SMC official said once Paul submitted his resignation, the deputy mayor would function as the chairperson for an interim period of one month. “Within this period, the new chairman has to be elected,” he added.