After losing crucial Malda and Murshidabad zilla parishads, a section of leaders urged Congress president Sonia Gandhi to remove Adhir Chowdhury as the party’s West Bengal chief to “save the party in the state”.
“We have written to the AICC president about our observations on Adhir Chowdhury. We have also mentioned how Adhir has been destroying the party…He is solely responsible for leaders and workers leaving the party and joining Trinamool Congress,” the party’s state general secretary Kanak Debnath said on Monday in Kolkta.
A copy of the letter, signed by three other general secretaries of the party — Ajoy Ghosh (also an AICC member), Khalid Ebadullah and Manoj Pandey, owing allegiance to embattled party leader Manas Bhunia was also sent to party vice-president Rahul Gandhi.
“Under Chowdhury’s leadership, Congress in Bengal, including in Malda and Murshidabad which are the strongholds of the party, is melting like an ice cream drop by drop,” they alleged in the letter.
They also alleged that the combination of Adhir Chowdhury and CLP Leader Abdul Mannan was completely destroying the party in the state.
“The two have been misleading the AICC continuously and insulting important leaders. The situation demands immediate removal of Adhir Chowdhury as PCC president and Abdul Mannan as CLP leader, otherwise many senior leaders, functionaries and MLAs will leave the party,” they alleged.
Asked whether they want Bhunia, a former WBPCC chief, back in the chair, Debnath said, “We want anybody but Chowdhury. We want to save the Congress in West Bengal at any cost.”
Bhunia recently fell foul of the WBPCC president and CLP leader over accepting PAC chairman’s post despite the party’s opposition.
The high-powered Central Disciplinary Action Committee of the party, headed by senior leader A K Antony, has sought an explanation from Bhunia for his various actions that had seen him at loggerheads with the state Congress as also the state Legislature Party which has recommended his suspension.
Highly-placed party sources said in a letter sent to him last week, Bhunia was given 15 days to explain why action should not be taken against him.