In the backdrop of a senior Bengal party leader expressing shock at Speaker Somnath Chatterjee's expulsion from the CPI(M), party state secretary Biman Bose on Thursday defended the action saying "no individual is above the party".
"The party wanted Chatterjee to resign from the Speaker's post after it withdrew support to the UPA government. The message was also conveyed to Chatterjee by the party. When he refused to accept the party's advice to resign, it was left with no other option but to expel him. No individual is above the party," Bose told reporters in Puruliya.
Bose avoided a direct reply when asked to comment on Transport minister Subhas Chakraborty's remarks on Chatterjee's expulsion. "I will look into it when I return to Kolkata," Bose said.
The Transport minister had said he was "terribly upset and shocked at the expulsion of Chatterjee, who was an asset to the party and had been associated for four decades".
Chatterjee had greatly helped uphold the image of the CPI(M), he had said.
The Central Committee of CPI(M) had on July 20 publicly censured Chakraborty, a state secretariat member of the West Bengal unit, for challenging the party line and asked him to conform to norms after he opposed the Speaker's resignation and voting by Left parties against along with the UPA government on the trust vote.
He had later expressed regret for his statements on going public.