Somen Mitra criticises Ghosh's suspension without hearing

Kolkata, Sep 28 : Virtually backing suspended Rajya Sabha member Kunal Ghosh, Trinamool MP Somen Mitra Saturday indicated that Ghosh has not been given any scope to defend himself before the punitive action.

"Even a convict getting capital punishment is allowed to defend himself. He is told what their crime is," Mitra, perceived to be the rallying point for dissident Trinamool MPs and leaders, told the media, after Ghosh said that he did not receive any show cause notice prior to his suspension.

Mitra's comment came after Trinamool secretary general Partha Chatterjee announced that Ghosh has been suspended from the party on disciplinary grounds and he had "not even bothered to reply to the show cause letter".

Rubbishing Chatterjee's claim, Mitra said: "I won't go by verbal comments. I've been hearing for almost a year that my wife Shikha Mitra (a party legislator) has been suspended for anti-party activity. So far, she has not received any suspension letter."

Taking pot-shots at the leadership, he quipped: "A Trinamool leader had once told me the party neither issues an appointment letter, nor a suspension letter."

Asked whether he thought Ghosh and two other MPs had made anti-party comments at a blood donation camp organised by him here Sep 20, Mitra said: "I don't think he said anything against party chief Mamata Banerjee or the leadership. He had some grievances against some leaders, which he articulated".

On Chatterjee's comment that the Trinamool is keeping a watch on leaders who are breaching party discipline, Mitra said: "That's great. It only shows the time has come when they are having to keep vigil on leaders."

Chatterjee had also cautioned Mitra that nobody was above "party discipline". "We will maintain discipline in the party at any cost. Those breaching discipline, belittling the party, will not be spared."

Reacting to union minister and Congress leader Abu Hashem Khan Chowdhury's claim that 8-10 Trinamool MPs including Mitra had approached the Congress and could join the party after Diwali, Mitra said: "I don't know where he has got the news that I will return to the Congress. .. if I at all return, I will return openly, and not secretly."

"And if I quit Trinamool, nobody will be able to say that I have quit the party when it was going through tough times. Unlike some others, I didn't join the Trinamool in its heyday," said Mitra, a former state Congress president, who has been sidelined in the Trinamo

--IANS (Posted on 28-09-2013)

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