Disgruntled Union Minister Shantanu Thakur has demanded the resignation of a ‘key leader’ in charge of the party’s ‘organisation’ for ‘excluding’ 90 per cent of the leaders in the reshuffled committee lists who helped BJP to increase their vote percentage from 2 per cent to 40 per cent in recent years.
Many in the party claimed that Shantanu Thakur was hinting towards Amitava Chakravorty, who is presently holding the post of ‘State General Secretary Organization of the BJP’.
Addressing a press conference, after having a meeting with other rebel party leaders today at the guest house of Kolkata Port Trust (KPT), Thakur said, “We felt that the present State Committee will not be able to take the State BJP forward. We felt that the reshuffled Committee in the district, block and booth level will not be able to strengthen the hands of Narendra Modi.”
He further said, “Over the months (in the recent past), we felt that this ‘key man’ who is responsible for the party’s organisation…you all know whom I am referring to…may have some understanding with the other party (hinting at Trinamool Congress). Therefore, we want his resignation from the State BJP. We gathered here to make the BJP strong in West Bengal. It seems that there is an attempt to finish the party by excluding key party leaders (not only from the main committee but also at the district level) who helped the State BJP to secure a 40 per cent vote share from 2 per cent. I am hopeful that soon more party leaders will join us who felt betrayed. Our fight will continue.”
Referring to Central leaders, he said, “It is not possible for them (central leaders) to keep track at the grass-root level and they have to rely on what the State BJP will brief them. In this case, we felt that the Central leadership was misled by a ‘vishesh ek jon vyakti’ (one special person) and we will not allow this to happen.”
“Not only key Matua representatives, leaders from ST, SC and OBC community were also not given importance in the main, zila, block and booth committee lists. We want to know on what basis/reason their names were excluded from the list. We have a strong feeling about a conspiracy to finish the State BJP here in connivance with other parties in Bengal,” a visibly annoyed Shantanu said.
State BJP president Sukanta Majumdar refused to make any comments claiming that it is the party’s internal matter. “There could be some communication gap and we are hopeful that soon the matter will be resolved,” he said.
Trinamool Congress Secretary General Partha Chatterjee, said, “The real face of the BJP is exposed. I will not say anything about them.”
On January 3, Shantanu Thakur left the ‘West Bengal BJP WhatsApp Group’.
Thakur holds the portfolio of Minister of State in the Ministry of Ports, Shipping and Waterways. He is the BJP Lok Sabha MP from Bongaon in the North 24-Parganas district.
Recently, Shantanu expressed his discontent after Matua community leaders were not given any prominence in the revised ‘State Committee Members’, district president, district-in-charge, Bibhag-in-charge and Bibhag convenors’ list announced by the State BJP president on December 23.
Following the development, five BJP MLAs quit the official WhatsApp group of the party’s legislature. The BJP MLAs who quit the official WhatsApp group of the party were: Asim Sarkar (Haringhata MLA in Nadia), Ambika Roy (Kalyani MLA in Nadia), Subrata Thakur (Gaighata MLA in North 24-Parganas), Mukut Mani Adhikari (Ranaghat South MLA in Nadia) and Ashok Kirtaniya (Bongaon North MLA in North 24-Parganas district).