In a major embarrassment for the ruling Trinamool Congress,party MP Kunal Ghosh today claimed that a TMC leader who wanted his ouster had once taken Rs 4 crore from Sudipta Sen,owner of the Saradha Group that recently went bust. He did not name the leader.
Ghosh also alleged that several other leaders were beneficiaries of the Saradha Group.
The MP,who has been summoned thrice by the CID of the state police for his alleged role in the Saradha scam,has recently been showcaused by the TMC for anti-party statements.
The journalist-cum-politician,who joined the TMC in 2012, however,put Minister for Agriculture Moloy Ghatak in the dock,saying Ghatak was threatening the financier of his new media venture.
Ghosh made these allegations after facing the Commission of Inquiry set up to probe the police firing of July 21 in 1993 in which at least 14 people were killed during a gherao programme at the Writers Buildings .
Later,speaking with The Indian Express at his Gariahat office,Ghosh said: Some of the leaders are hitting the roof,saying I should be expelled from the party. Why are they saying so? Is it because of the fact that they are also beneficiaries (of Saradha)? One of these leaders took Rs 4 crore from Sudipta Sen. Sen himself told me about this, Ghosh said.
He also said he was fearing an attempt on his life. Anything can happen to me but I am not afraid. And so far as my arrest is concerned,if the police think they will arrest me,let them do that. What can I say? Ghosh,who is now attached to another media company,Radiant News,said.
He also said he had urged the party leadership to set up a commission to probe his role in the Saradha scam
I have problems in saying certain things before the police as it could severely embarrass the party. I am still loyal to (Chief Minister) Mamata Banerjee and I dont want to put the party in jeopardy. I earnestly urge the party to set up such a commission, Ghosh,who looked visibly perturbed,said.
Ghosh also claimed he had no idea that the Saradha Group was involved in any shady business. I was with the media business and I did not know about its dark side. Of course,I used to get a salary of Rs 15 lakh per month for about a year,when I was given the charge of a big project. When the Group went bust,I spent a portion of the money to pay the salaries of some employees,and I have Rs 20 lakh left with me. I have written to Mamatadi that I am ready to hand over the amount to CMs relief fund, Ghosh said.
Regarding his future in the party,Ghosh said it is for Mamata Banerjee to decide. Nobody has so far told me to resign. Mamatadi is a great leader. She will decide what I will do, Ghosh said.
When contacted,Minister Ghatak dared Ghosh to reveal the names of those from Burdwan who have financed his company.
Let him mention the names,let him say which coal thief or iron scrap thief has financed his company, Ghatak told The Indian Express from Burdwan.
Ghosh faced flak from other ministers as well.
Minister for Sports and Transport Madan Mitra called him a Mir Jafar. Our party cadre have got to know about him and they will take care of him, Mitra said at the Writers Buildings.