Mamata Banerjee will launch a ‘rectification exercise’ within her party after the Assembly election results are out. Party old-timers told HT on Thursday that they believe the Trinamool Congress will retain power and the top priority will be to ‘purify’ the party and weed out corrupt elements. They feel that corruption, unless tackled, will mask all the development initiatives that the chief minister undertakes so passionately.
Senior Trinamool leaders said that Mamata is deeply upset over a section of her party leaders indulging in corruption and activities like construction syndicates. She had to face innumerable opposition barbs over the question of graft. “It’s just a matter of time for the purification drive to begin. Our party chief still has a clean image and she is annoyed with many leaders. She single-handedly campaigned and fought the opposition this poll season. It was an enormous challenge in the backdrop of party leaders being seen taking bribes and getting exposed as part of syndicates. Those who know her (Mamata) know what’s coming,” a senior Lok Sabha MP of the party told HT.
Party insiders said that there are many leaders who are not only veterans but have a clean image. Such leaders will have the upper hand after the poll results. Sources said some tainted leaders who are ministers may also be dropped or given less important portfolios if the party forms the government.
“I’m sure that the Trinamool will retain power. This time, you will see a new and better Trinamool under Mamata. It’s a fact that the development undertaken by her has overshadowed the misdeeds of the few. The party will make sure that such things are not repeated. An internal enquiry is already on regarding the Narada issue,” a senior party leader close to Mamata said.
The senior leadership of the party believes that the party’s tally will drop from 184 — the number it bagged in the watershed 2011 polls. In such a situation, insiders said that Mamata would definitely clip the wings of many a leader.
“No party can allow a senior leader like Dinesh Trivedi speak against the party in public. Therefore, he has been censured. But this does not mean that there will be no rectification drive. It will done within the party, and silently,” a Trinamool MLA and a top party leader close to Mamata said.
Kalighat sources said Mamata is peeved with the fact that a section of leaders got involved in extortion, bribes, syndicates and other such activities within just five years of the party coming to power.
At a recent programme on Tagore’s birth anniversary, Mamata was seen according more importance to veterans in the party.