Former Bengal BJP chief Dilip Ghosh calls successor ‘inexperienced’
Rumblings resurfaced after the BJP’s defeat in the by-polls to Kolkata’s Ballygunge assembly and Asansol Lok Sabha seats on April 16
Kolkata: Former West Bengal Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) chief Dilip Ghosh on Thursday called his successor Sukanta Majumdar an “inexperienced” leader who has “come recently” amid rumblings within the state unit.
“We fought atrocities that people faced. I hit the streets. People stood by us and blessed us. But now people have lost confidence. Why will they accept us as the Opposition if we do not play our role? A lot of things are lacking. There is a lack of confidence and planning,” Ghosh said.
Majumdar, who succeeded Ghosh in September, has faced criticism within the party since old-timers at the state and district levels were replaced following a leadership reshuffle in December. He formed some new committees to accommodate those left out but the criticism has continued.
The rumblings resurfaced after the party’s defeat in the by-polls to Kolkata’s Ballygunge assembly and Asansol Lok Sabha seats on April 16. BJP leaders said state general secretary Amitava Chakravorty was summoned to Delhi as the central leadership is unhappy with the by-poll results.
Ghosh questioned how can they go ahead by removing able people from leadership roles. “Those who stood by us till 2019 [when the BJP won 18 of Bengal’s 42 Lok Sabha seats] are...disappointed. They have not left us but they have no work now. Leadership always goes through change. Leaders come and go but workers stay on.”
Lok Sabha member Saumitra Khan blamed inexperienced leaders for the poor show. Leaders such as Anupam Hazra have made similar statements. Lok Sabha member Locket Chatterjee and Agnimitra Paul, who lost the Asansol by-poll, stayed away from a meeting Majumdar called in Kolkata on Tuesday.
Gauri Shankar Ghosh resigned as the state general secretary on April 16, accusing the party of putting inefficient people in leadership roles. BJP workers staged a protest in Murshidabad on Wednesday seeking the resignation of district president Dhananjay Ghosh. In Nadia district, 10 leaders also stepped down last week. In Siliguri, BJP legislator Sankar Ghosh left the party’s WhatsApp group without citing any reason.
Majumdar said he can only react to what ruling Trinamool Congress (TMC) leaders say. “I do not comment on what leaders of our party are saying.”
TMC leader Kunal Ghosh said differences in the BJP will widen in the coming days. “This is only the beginning. Bengal BJP leaders have lost their minds. The pack of cards is collapsing,” Ghosh said.
Union home minister Amit Shah is scheduled to visit Bengal next month and the BJP has planned rallies to uplift the morale of workers.