New Delhi: Infighting has intensified in the Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP)’s West Bengal unit, with state BJP president Dilip Ghosh highlighting issues of indiscipline against party MPs Babul Supriyo and Saumitra Khan during his meeting with the party’s national president J.P. Nadda, ThePrint has learnt.
According to party sources, Ghosh met Nadda at his residence in New Delhi Monday and complained about how Supriyo and Khan, who is also the state Bharatiya Janata Yuva Morcha (BJYM) president, made “objectionable” remarks on social media after former was dropped from the Union council of ministers and the latter didn’t get a ministerial berth.
“There are a lot of people who post-elections, and recently, have made irresponsible statements that affect the morale of the workers. So it is important that disciplinary action is taken against them. It is not right to discuss party issues publicly. The central leadership is aware of those statements too,” Ghosh told ThePrint.
However, when specifically asked about these two leaders, he refused to name them.
Asked about reports of BJP planning to replace him, Ghosh said, “That’s for the party to decide”.
‘Ghosh making jealousy apparent’
Soon after he was dropped from the Union government, Supriyo took to social media and said he was made to resign. But he issued a clarification after the issue snowballed.
“Yes, I have resigned from the Council Of Ministers (As I had framed it earlier, “Asked to resign” may not be the right way to put it ) I thank Honble Prime Minister for giving me the privilege to serve my country as a Member of his Council of Ministers,” he said in a Facebook post.
ThePrint reached Supriyo for a comment via texts and calls but there was no response until the time of publishing this report.
A close aide of Supriyo said the MP had informed Nadda about his social media post, which was only meant to provide information to the media as they had been calling him for a reaction and it wasn’t aimed at expressing his displeasure.
“Ghosh is making his jealousy quite apparent. He has issued an advisory that leaders should refrain from making objectionable comments but he ends up doing the same. Supriyo has done good work and is a committed party worker and believes in a symbiotic relationship with the media. By highlighting such issues in the media, Ghosh is only hurting the party,” said Supriyo’s aide.
Last week, Saumitra Khan resigned as the Bengal BJYM president and took to Facebook to launch a blistering attack on the state unit. He withdrew the resignation after senior party leaders intervened.
Asked to comment on the issue, Khan said: “I am a Member of Parliament and a worker of the BJP. I don’t want to say anything beyond this.”
What Ghosh discussed with Nadda
Apart from raising the issue of indiscipline, Ghosh also discussed with Nadda the likely rejig that is set to take place in the state unit.
According to a BJP leader who didn’t wish to be named, the party workers are against newcomers being given key responsibilities and Ghosh conveyed this to the central leadership too.
During the meeting, Ghosh also suggested that the party should not give “bigger and important” roles to those who joined the BJP recently, said sources.
“A number of people joined the BJP before the elections and we have been able to establish ourselves as the main opposition party and now we have to focus on strengthening the state unit. The state unit will undergo some changes and the party workers who have been with the BJP for long will be given due recognition,” said the BJP leader.
“BJP workers who have toiled hard for years were already upset when many of them were denied tickets and if newcomers will be given key positions in the state units it will affect their morale,” said a second leader.
(Edited by Amit Upadhyaya)