The Trinamool Congress has accepted the singer-turned-politician, Kabir Suman’s resignation from all party posts on Tuesday.
Trinamool chief Mamata Banerjee also asked Lok Sabha Speaker Meira Kumar to accept Suman’s resignation from Parliament for his “anti-party activities”.
Suman, who sent in his resignation on Monday night through an SMS to Banerjee, had a major spat with the party over his public stand against the anti-Maoist operations in Lalgarh in Bengal’s West Midnapore district, about 170 km west of Kolkata.
Banerjee told Hindustan Times: “Everybody says that I should not tolerate his (Suman’s) idiosyncrasies anymore. Our ideology is Congress ideology. We cannot support the Maoist philosophy.”
She said, “I even took him to Pranabda (Finance Minister Pranab Mukherjee) and asked him to put some sense into him. But he (Suman) refused to see reason.”
Suman told his supporters in Kolkata on Tuesday: “I will leave the constituency (Jadavpur in southwest Kolkata) tomorrow never to return again. I am not a slave of the party, but a slave of the people who elected me.”
Now that the Trinamool will have 18 members in Parliament, Trinamool Congress leader and Union Minister of State for Shipping Mukul Roy said, “We expect a by-election in Jadavpur in six to eight months.”
The first incident that showed the crack between Suman and the Trinamool was the controversy over the utilisation of the MPLAD funds.
“They wanted me to sign papers sitting at home. I told them, let me earn some money for the next five years, and you do the same after that,” Suman had said in a lighter vein.
Suman’s resignation is likely to rattle the party on the eve of Kolkata Municipal Corporation elections in May and more than 80 municipalities throughout the state in the coming months.
A hugely popular singer, Suman’s exit will benefit CPI(M) in the municipal wards in the Jadavpur constituency.