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Unhappy with post, Singur MLA rebels

HT Correspondent, Hindustan Times   Kolkata, November 23, 2012
First Published: 23:10 IST(23/11/2012) | Last Updated: 23:11 IST(23/11/2012)

After charting political change in Bengal once, Singur seems to have become a hotbed of rebellion.

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Latest is the case of Singur MLA and former agriculture minister Rabindranath Bhattacharjee, who is refusing to accept the charge of the lesser important statistics and implementation department that was offered to him on Wednesday.

CM Mamata Banerjee’s decision hurt Bhattacharjee so deeply that the 80-year-old three-time Singur MLA told HT on Friday that he was contemplating retirement from politics.

For Banerjee, Bhattacharjee’s decision to quit the cabinet would be especially uncomfortable as it concerns Singur, the womb of her political rebirth after 34 years of Left rule in the state.

Bhattacharjee was the president of Singur Krishi Jami Raksha Committee, the body that began the agitation for land that became the political signature of Banerjee. “I’ve not informed the government. None from my party’s top leadership contacted me either. But I’m incapable of taking up the new assignment,” said Bhattacharjee.

Nobody from the government or from the Trinamool Congress reacted to Bhattacharjee’s decision till Friday evening.

Wednesday’s reshuffle has aggrieved a section of party. Though Shyamal Mandal, MoS for Sunderbans development— stripped of his charge — did not say anything against the party or Banerjee, he could not hide his disappointment. Manish Gupta lost the statistics and implementation department, but retained power ministry. Gupta, too, has not reacted publicly.


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