In a desperate bid to stall mass exodus of leaders and workers in Murshidabad and establish his control over the party’s unit, the WBPCC president Adhir Chowdhury on Tuesday held the District Magistrate responsible for the fleeing of his party workers.
He demanded the immediate transfer of the District Magistrate, Y Ratnakar Rao and alleged that he was trying to create a dent in the party’s hold over Zilla Parishad. Eight Congress Zilla Parishad members and two RSP members have joined Trinamool Congress making the total of party’s Zilla Parishad members to 28, just two short of establishing its control.
Chowdhury took part in a march organised by the party demanding the removal of the District Magistrate. “The District Magistrate is behaving like a Trinamool Congress worker and is trying to make a dent in the unity of Congress. He is trying to gift Zilla Parishad to TMC but the Zilla Parishad was with us and will be with us in the future too,” he said. He added, “Trinamool Congress was buying the Opposition leaders and trying to make municipalities to Zilla Parishad free from the Opposition. This is a dangerous trend in democracy.”
Three municipalities under the Opposition’s control i.e. Jangipur, Beldanga and Azimgunj-Jiagunj have come under the Trinamool Congress. Beldanga municipality is in Chowdhury’s constituency. Political experts expressed that if the trend continues like this, then three other municipalities namely Kandi, Murshidabad and Behrampore will also come under TMC soon unless Congress takes positive initiative to persuade its workers. It may be recalled that Chowdhury had made the MLAs give an undertaking that they would not quit the party but despite that Tushar Kanti Bhattacharya joined TMC on July 21.
Trinamool Congress Chief, Mamata Banerjee had asked the State Transport minister, Suvendu Adhikari to look after Murshidabad on behalf of the party. The party has bagged four seats in the Assembly election and in less than three months after the new government was sworn in; it has got control over three municipalities.
Political experts said that Chowdhury’s strained relation with Manas Bhuniya over the latter’s appointment as the PAC chairman had not gone well with the party workers. They said: “Party workers thought that Chowdhury was trying to settle his personal score and this would not help the party to regain the lost ground.” Murshidabad is believed to be the fiefdom of Chowdhury and with the fast attrition of support base, it has to be seen that for how long he would be able to keep his control over the party in the district.