Still a Minister and primary member of Trinamool, says Suvendu Adhikari

He is testing the waters before deciding on the future course of action, say observers

Trinamool Congress leader and Minister Suvendu Adhikari on Thursday said he is still a primary member of the party and a Minister in Mamata Banerjee’s Cabinet. His recent utterances and public appearances without party flags and symbols have created discomfort in the party.

“I am still a primary and active member of a party. I am still a Minister of the Cabinet. Neither has the Chief Minister expelled me nor have I resigned,” Mr. Adhikari said at a public gathering at Ramnagar in Purba Medinipur district.

Though his remarks have come as some respite to the party leadership which has been sending emissaries to placate him, Mr. Adhikari did not put any closure on the speculation of his political future.

“All the posts I occupy are elected, not selected nor nominated,” Mr. Adhikari reiterated. He said in a political party there are differences of opinion which sometimes may lead to separation. He said he has never indulged in politics without principles or ethics.

Party MP Saugata Roy said he has spoken to Mr. Adhikari on the instructions of Chief Minister Mamata Banerjee.

“I had spoken to him; I have told to the Chief Minister what he said. There is a possibility of a meeting with Suvendu again next week,” Mr. Roy said. The senior TMC leader quoted Mr. Adhikari as saying “he is with the party and has not taken any decision to leave”.

These developments come at a time when posters of Mr. Adhikari are coming up in every district of south Bengal and the leader is holding rallies in his own capacity. On November 10, he held a rally in Nandigram to mark the people’s struggle against forcible land acquisition. The gathering during the day was organised by workers of different cooperatives.

The biggest question in the political circles is what decision Mr. Adhikari is going to take. Sources in the party suggest that he wants a bigger role in the organisation. Mr. Adhikari was an observer to several districts of south Bengal which he lost in the recent organisational reshuffle.

Political observers and even leaders of the Opposition said he is testing the waters before deciding on the future course of action.

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