Matter of time before Trinamool splits: CPI-M
It was only a matter of time before Mamata Banerjee's Trinamool Congress splits, the CPI-M asserted Thursday, but said it wanted the party-led West Bengal government to continue for five years so that she stood exposed before the people.
"She had formed a rainbow coalition against us. After that there were two other parties with her Trinamool Congress - the Congress and the SUCI-C. Now none of these parties are with her. And Trinamool's unity is now under threat. I think it is only a matter of time, before it splits," leader of opposition and CPI-M politburo member Surjya Kanta Mishra told media persons.
"However, we do not want the Trinamool regime to collapse now. On the contrary, we want Mamata Banerjee to continue in office for the full five-year term. Otherwise how will the real Mamata be exposed before the people?"
Mishra's comments came in the wake of a section of Trinamool workers assaulting party's veteran leader Sovandeb Chattopadhyay, who threatened to leave the party if he continued to be insulted.
Ahead of Chattopadhyay's outburst, Singur legislator and disgruntled minister Rabindranath Bhattacharya alleged that that a section of his partymen indulged in extorting money from the people and Banerjee herself was aware about it.
Bhattacharya was recently shunted from agriculture to the statistics and programme implementation department, but refused to join his new assignment.
"Sovandeb Chattopadhyay was Trinamool's first MLA when the party was formed. Now we find even he is not being spared. Blows are being rained on him. This is no isolated incident. It started in the grassroots, and is now spreading to the top," Mishra said.
He described as "100 percent true" Bhattacharya's allegation that the Trinamool workers were engaged in extortion.
Mishra took strong exception to Banerjee's comment against his detractors ("Raja chale bazaar, to kutta bhonke hazar" - the king walks his own path, while thousands of dogs bark).
"So she is the royal, and we - the opposition, (Press Council of India chairman) Markandey Katju, the media and even her party leaders Chattopadhyay and Bhattacharya - are howling dogs".
Katju used strong language to lash out against Banerjee in a letter during the day. He called her "intolerant and whimsical" and warned she would lose power if she did not change.