'If anyone badmouths...': TMC warns action to its warring party leaders

FPJ Web DeskUpdated: Sunday, January 16, 2022, 10:32 AM IST
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Amid a war of words between a section of its old guard and generation next leaders, Trinamool Congress on Saturday warned action by its disciplinary committee if anyone in it badmouths other members in the media instead of discussing the issue within the party.

We ask everyone concerned to stop issuing statements and discuss matters within the party. Those who do not abide by this, they will be reported to the disciplinary committee and subjected to appropriate action,” party secretary-general Partha Chatterjee, told reporters, PTI reported.

With the annual Gangasagar Mela underway and civic polls to four municipal corporations in the offing, TMC national general secretary Abhishek Banerjee's remarks on halting political programmes and religious meetings for two months in view of the surging COVID pandemic had raised eyebrows last week.

The date for the municipal corporation poll has since been changed from January 22 to February 12 by the State Election Commission.

Banerjee had also come up with the Diamond Harbour Model as Bengal faced a spike in the number of coronavirus cases since the last week of December 2021.

On the occasion of Swami Vivekananda's birthday, he wrote in the social media that more than 50,000 COVID tests were conducted in his Diamond Harbour parliamentary constituency, which is in sharp contrast to average

regular testing figure of 65,000 to 70,000 across the state.

His Diamond Harbour Model implies maximum numbers of tests on a single day, strict implementation of COVID safety protocols, banning all political, social and religious meetings till the end of February, a dedicated control room and WhatsApp number for every panchayat and municipality, isolation centres, doctors on call and doctor and health staff-on-wheels facility in the constituency.

Three-time party MP Kalyan Banerjee had openly criticised the Diamond Harbour model on Thursday.

"What Diamond Harbour model ? There is only one model that Mamata Banerjee has come up with. We are all fighting COVID in our own ways," he had said.

He had also criticised Abhishek Banerjee, who is the nephew of Chief Minister Mamata Banerjee, for airing his views in public and speaking in the language of opposition BJP.

"I may have my own opinion on some issues. But should I broach it outside? We should never do it. There is a rule in an organisation. It seems someone is speaking in the language of the opposition BJP. People of the state had voted for Mamata Banerjee, our leader, in past elections. She is my leader. I don't consider anyone else as my leader," he had said.

Although TMC state general Kunal Ghosh tried to dispel the controversy by saying it was not one model versus other, he was critical of Kalyan Banerjee.

Kalyan’s remarks were criticised by his party colleagues including Kunal Ghosh and Aparupa Poddar who demanded his resignation from his post of the party chief whip in Lok Sabha for violating its discipline.

"Under the leadership of Mamata Banerjee the government is trying its hardest to combat the pandemic. The public representatives are always doing their level best in their own areas. Abhishek Banerjee is our national general secretary. What he said about containing the COVID-19 spike reflects the general public opinion. If someone speaks against our national general secretary, the disciplinary panel will take note of his utterances," Ghosh had said.

(With inputs from PTI)

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