Mamata Banerjee’s party suspended Mukul Roy for six years on grounds of his indiscipline.
Kolkata: Resting all speculation senior Trinamul Congress Rajya Sabha MP Mukul Roy finally quit the party on Monday morning adding credence to the possibility that he may join the BJP. He said he would resign as a Rajya Sabha MP after the Durga Puja. Stung by his announcement chief minister Mamata Banerjee’s party within few hours suspended for six years on the grounds of his indiscipline.
Mr Roy’s move came close on the heels of him being censured by the party's secretary general Partha Chatterjee who cautioned him that he was under the watch following reports of his frequent meetings with the senior central BJP leaders in New Delhi. He was also cornered in the party after the Trinamul removed the vice-president’s post he had held over his close rapport with the BJP.
Once known to be the most trusted lieutenant of the TMC supremo, Mr Roy’s distance with Ms Banerjee however widened after he was suspected to have revealed secrets during his questioning by the Central Bureau of Investigation in Saradha chit fund scam in January of 2015. Mr Roy was then removed from the Trinamul’s general secretary's post. He was also thrown out of two parliamentary panels later.
He was recently grilled by the Central Bureau of Investigation in Narada sting operation case. At a press meet in Nizam Palace at around 10.30 am Mr Roy informed his decision with a ‘heavy heart.’
“Today is Mahapanchami. The people of Bengal and India are celebrating Durga Puja. They do not like any political issues this time. Thats why I do not want make any big announcement now,” he said.
Mr Roy added, “I was the first signatory of the Trinamul during its birth on December 17 in 1997. With a heavy heart and pain I announce I have taken a decision going by my principle. I do not hold any post in the party at present. I am a member of the Trinamul Congress working committee and a Rajya Sabha MP elected by the party. I will send an email to my party tendering my resignation from the membership of the working committee.”
He continued, “Next, as soon as Durga Puja ends, I will resign from the Rajya Sabha MP’s post which still has a tenure of eight months. However, I will not reveal why I quit the party now and why I would resign from the Rajya Sabha MP’s post because the people will not like it due to the festive season. But I will explain it all on the day I would resign as an MP. I will resign from the party’s general membership few days later.”
He also kept the suspense about the future of his political career alive offering no comments. On Sunday evening Mr Roy visited a Durga Puja patronised by suspended Trinamul Congress Rajya Sabha MP Kunal Ghosh in north Kolkata. Asked about Mr Chatterjee’s recent warning against him, Mr Roy said, “Let the kid say according to his whims.” At around 1 pm Mr Chatterjee declared of Mr Roy’s suspension for six years.
He reasoned that Mr Roy breached the party’s discipline. “Mr Roy was trying to weaken the party for a long time. The party’s disciplinery committee discussed about his activities and recommended punishment to the Trinamul Congress chief. Why doesn’t Mr Roy want to leave if he wishes to? Why does he give the excuse of Durga Puja? Who is stopping him? He buckled under the central agency’s pressure,” Mr Chatterjee said.
Retaliating to Mr Mukul Roy’s attack on him he bantered, “The kids are satisfied with less. Although none knew him, he was made the party’s MP and later railway minister by our party supremo. But what can satisfy the old men?” state Congress president Adhir Chowdhury welcomed Mr Mukul Roy’s decision and kept the door ajar for Mr Roy to join the party.
He said, “Mamata Banerjee has not reached the peak of success on her own within a day. There were many others including Mr Roy who worked tirelessly for the party. But Ms Banerjee is such a person who can't tolerate the rise of anyone else in the Trinamul Congress. In all these years Mr Roy remained silent despite all humiliation put on him by his party. Finally Mr Mukul Roy couldn’t bear it anymore. I would welcome Mr Roy if he joins our party.”