The ongoing feud in West Bengal BJP intensified on Monday after it suspended its senior leaders Ritesh Tiwari and Jaiprakash Majumdar, who were earlier show caused, for violating the party discipline. A statement issued by the West Bengal BJP unit said Tiwari and Majumdar have been “temporarily suspended” till the party’s disciplinary committee completes its investigation under instructions of BJP state president Sukanta Majumdar.
Reacting to his suspension, an infuriated Tiwari told a news channel that “a coterie of leaders” who had joined BJP in recent times are acting as “agents of TMC” and are harming its interests. “The show cause was given to me with malafide intentions. I have been a loyal BJP worker for more than 35 years. I have neither any grievances against the party nor against the state president. But a few leaders are acting as agents of Trinamool Congress and are trying to capture the party. My fight is against them and I will not stop till these leaders are ousted from BJP,” he said.
Virtually throwing out a challenge to the BJP state leadership, Tiwari said “Let them expel me from the party if they can …. Some people who had joined the party after the 2019 Lok Sabha poll are calling the shots and are insulting old-timers. Let them first prove where I said anything against the party”. Continuing his tirade against the state BJP, he said, “I was served a show-cause notice without doing anything, that too by a disciplinary committee which was itself dissolved a few days ago.” When contacted Majumdar declined to comment but said he will clear his stand on the issue in a press conference on Tuesday. The two senior BJP leaders, who were dropped from the new office bearers committee last year, were on Sunday issued a show-cause notice by the state unit. Both were vice-presidents of the state unit in the previous committee and Majumdar was named one of the spokespersons in the new state committee announced a month ago. Tiwari was not included in the committee.
Earlier in the day, Majumdar had told reporters that Tiwari and he had been served the show cause notice on Sunday. The two leaders had participated in a meeting convened by union minister Shantanu Thakur, an influential leader of the sizeable Matua community in the state, over a week ago in Kolkata. They were present when Thakur, the union minister of state for ports, shipping and waterways, castigated a section of the state leaders who had allegedly overlooked 90 per cent loyal BJP leaders, including backward caste members, while forming the new committee.
The union minister had held a picnic with several disgruntled BJP leaders in his Bongaon constituency a few days ago. He told reporters on Sunday that several disgruntled leaders of the party are in touch with him. “So how many can the party show cause ?” BJP adversary TMC took a dig at the ongoing tiff in the saffron camp. “The BJP is a sinking ship in West Bengal. They were thinking of conquering Bengal (in the state poll in 2021) but cannot keep their own house in order,” TMC MP Sougata Roy said.