CPI-M Polit Bureau nod to expel Ritabrata Banerjee

first_imgThe Polit Bureau of the Communist Party of India (CPI-M) has approved the decision to expel Ritabrata Banerjee, Rajya Sabha MP and former general secretary of the Student Federation of India, the party’s youth wing.The decision to expel Mr. Banerjee was taken by the West Bengal State Secretariat last Wednesday and the decision was eventually approved by the Polit Bureau, party’s highest decision-making body, a statement issued on Friday by Surjya Kanta Mishra, the State secretary of Bengal CPI-M, said. The one page statement said the party has tried “repeatedly” to “rectify” Mr. Banerjee but the attempts failed and thus he was expelled. “Instead of rectifying himself, he went on to tarnish party’s image,” Mr Mishra said in his statement. Mr Banerjee, who has a huge following among students and the youth, joined the CPI-M in 1996 as a student leader and was elected as a Rajya Sabha member in 2014. Following his expulsion on Friday, political circles in Bengal are rife with speculation about his next move. Mr Banerjee, however, refused to indicate if he would be joining any of the CPI-M’s rivals. Inquiry panelQuoting a report submitted by the commission of inquiry against Mr Banerjee, Mr. Mishra added that the State Committee approved of “punitive measures” against the former on August 7-8 and the Central Committee was “informed.”“But in an interview on September 11 to a television channel, Mr. Banerjee publicly denigrated the party. On basis of this [the interview] the State Secretariat decided to expel him,” Mr Mishra said.“CPI-M’s Polit Bureau has approved the decision,” Mr. Mishra said on Friday and added that the State Secretariat expelled Mr. Banerjee from the primary membership on basis of “Article 19 [13] of party constitution.” Mr Banerjee was warned by the party in February for activities affecting the CPI-M’s internal rules and regulations. Eventually he was suspended in June by the West Bengal State Committee and a three-member probe commission, headed by Polit Bureau member Md. Salim, was formed. The commission gave its report indicating that Mr Banerjee was “guilty” of the allegations raised against him. He was chargesheeted by the party, Mr Mishra noted. Mr Banerjee challenged the charge sheet and the party by targeting the top brass including Prakash Karat and his wife Brinda. He also targeted Mr Salim and described the commission as a “kangaroo commission.”last_img read more