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Saturday, January 22, 2022

Amid protests, Bengal BJP unit dissolves all departments, cells

🔴 The move came after dissident BJP leaders in West Bengal decided to come together and sit for a meeting on January 15 to discuss issues concerning the state unit of the party.

By: Express News Service | Kolkata |
Updated: January 14, 2022 12:59:52 pm
Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP, West Bengal BJP, Sukanta Majumdar, Amitava Chakravorty, West Bengal, Kolkata, West Bengal news, Kolkata news, India news, Indian Express News Service, Express News Service, Express News, Indian Express NewsDr. Sukanta Majumdar, MP, State President of West Bengal BJP (File)

The Bengal unit of the BJP on Thursday dissolved all its departments and cells after protests against the state party leadership intensified.

A circular issued by the party late in the evening read, “As per the instructions of Dr. Sukanta Majumdar, MP, State President of West Bengal BJP, all Departments and Cells stand dissolved till the time they are reconstituted and new appointments made.”

The move came after dissident BJP leaders in West Bengal decided to come together and sit for a meeting on January 15 to discuss issues concerning the state unit of the party. Sources in the party said the meeting, to be held at Kolkata Port Trust Guest House, will feature a large number of leaders who recently quit the party’s official WhatsApp groups after they were left out of the BJP’s new state committee.

The dissident leaders have already held meetings at the house of Union minister Shantanu Thakur, senior BJP leader Joy Prakash Majumdar and another party leader Pratap Banerjee. However, some of them could not attend those meetings.

“Therefore, we have decided to hold a meeting for all those who have been deprived by the party. Long-time party leaders and those who have actually helped build the party in Bengal have been left out of the new state committee. We have nothing against new inclusions but it should not be at the cost of removing the old-timers,” said a senior BJP leader on the condition of anonymity.

He added that a large number of such leaders have grievances against state BJP general secretary (organisation) Amitava Chakravorty.

“A competition is going on within Bengal BJP to capture the state unit of the party. Amitava Chakravorty played a big role in shaping the new state committee and inducted leaders close to his camp. He has ignored the contribution of leaders who made it possible for the BJP to get 38 per cert vote share (2021 Assembly polls). It is now the need of the hour to arrive at a consensus against his wrongdoings,” the leader added.

Last month, at least 10 BJP MLAs, including Union Minister Shantanu Thakur and a large number of district leaders, quit the party’s WhatsApp groups to mark their protests against their exclusion from the new state committee.

Ahead of the last visit of Union Home Minister Amit Shah and BJP national president JP Nadda to West Bengal to iron out differences in the party’s state unit, Union Minister of State Santanu Thakur said that he had left various WhatsApp groups of the party.

Though the state BJP leadership remained tight-lipped over the issue, sources said that Thakur, who represents Bongaon Lok Sabha seat and is a Matua community leader, was unhappy over the “lack representation of Matua leaders” in the recently reconstituted state and district committees of the party.

“I will not like to comment on my leaving the WhatsApp groups right now. Let the right time come, I will tell you the reason for my actions and my future plans,” Thakur had said on his exit.

Later, actor-turned-BJP MLA Hiran Chatterjee followed in the footsteps of Union Minister Shantanu Thakur and quit all WhatsApp groups of the party’s state unit.  However, he claimed that he had no plans to quit the saffron camp.

Chatterjee, who was the sole winner from the party in Paschim Medinipur district in the Assembly election, said, “My decision was prompted by the realization that my service is not required by the state BJP. Most decisions relating to programmes of the party in my constituency are taken without my knowledge.”

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