BJP rebukes party’s ex-Bengal chief Dilip Ghosh, says don’t attack colleagues
The BJP central leadership has reprimanded ex-Bengal chief Dilip Ghosh for his multiple statements against the party’s state leaders including Bengal unit chief Sukanta Majumdar.
KOLKATA: The Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) has rebuked the party’s former West Bengal chief Dilip Ghosh, 57, for his statements critical of other party leaders in the state and told him “refrain” from speaking about his colleagues in the state or elsewhere, people aware of the matter said, citing a letter sent by BJP national general secretary Arun Singh on Monday.
The sharply worded letter comes after relations between Dilip Ghosh and the Bengal unit president Sukanta Majumdar, 42, hit a new low, with the two senior state leaders running each other down in public after the Trinamool Congress won the Asansol Lok Sabha seat for the first time in the Bengal bypolls
On April 21, Ghosh called Majumdar an “inexperienced” leader who had “come recently”. Hitting back, Majumdar said Ghosh too was “inexperienced” when the latter was made state president in 2015, six months after he was “loaned to the party by the Rashtriya Swayamsevak Sangh (RSS)”.
Ghosh took over the Bengal BJP unit in 2015 and led the state unit when it expanded rapidly, wresting 18 of Bengal’s 42 Lok Sabha seats in 2019. However, the party won only 77 of Bengal’s 294 assembly seats in the 2021 state polls held in March-April.
Ghosh was replaced by Balurghat Lok Sabha MP Sukanta Majumdar in September and Ghosh, who represents Midnapore in the Lok Sabha, was appointed national vice-president.
Till Tuesday afternoon, Ghosh insisted that he hadn’t received any letter and refused to comment on the matter.
Sukanta Majumdar, who was at a party programme in North Dinajpur district, said, “I am not aware of the letter.”
But a copy of the letter was put out by news agency ANI, among others.
Bengal BJP chief spokesperson Samik Bhattacharya declined to comment. “I am surprised to see the contents of the letter getting leaked to the media. This is an internal matter of the party,” he said.
Arun Singh’s one-page letter noted that some of his “statements or outbursts” had caused anguish among the state leaders and caused embarrassment to the central leadership of the BJP. It added that the party leadership on several occasions pointed out these statements in the “fond hope” that he will take note.
“Given your standing and stature, you are expected to inspire, lead, direct and hold together your own party colleagues at all levels,” the letter, released by ANI, said.
“On the instructions of Hon’ble national president Shri JP Nadda ji, I wish to convey to you Party’s deep anguish and concern at issuance of such statements and advise you to always refrain from going to the media or any public fora about your own colleagues either in the state of West Bengal or anywhere else,” the letter said.
Majumdar has been drawing criticism from a section of the party after he made organisational changes in December last year that led to the replacement of some old-timers known to be close to Dilip Ghosh.
BJP leaders summoned Ghosh to Delhi on May 24 when a five-member national committee was formed to supervise polling booth organisations in states across India till the 2024 polls are over. Ghosh was given charge of eight states; Nagaland, Mizoram, Manipur, Sikkim, Bihar, Jharkhand, Odisha and Andaman. This was seen as a move to keep Ghosh away from Bengal. As an RSS pracharak, he had worked in some of these states.
Trinamool Congress state general secretary Kunal Ghosh said BJP workers are suffering from low morale as they were rejected by the people of Bengal. “Why target only Dilip Ghosh? The entire state leadership is responsible,” Ghosh said.