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Did CPI(M) suspend RS MP for 'flaunting' Mont Blanc pen and Apple Watch?

Sulagna Sengupta | Updated on: 2 June 2017, 18:43 IST
(FIle Photo)

The West Bengal unit of the CPI(M) has suspended Rajya Sabha MP Ritabrata Banerjee for three months, after it received complaints that he was “leading a lavish lifestyle”.

This comes on the heels of a controversy that erupted in the party after a DYFI leader posted a picture of Banerjee flaunting his Mont Blanc pen and Apple watch.

The CPI(M) state committee met at its headquarters at Kolkata's Alimuddin Street and decided to suspend Banerjee after receiving complaints against him. There have also been allegations that he behaved rudely with a few party functionaries.

The party has formed a three member inquiry committee comprising senior leaders Mohammad Salim, Madan Ghosh and Mridul De and they have been asked to submit a report by August 3 after reviewing the complaints against Banerjee

“Based on the report we will decide whether to revoke or extend his suspension,” said senior leader Surjya Kanta Mishra.

Though the party hasn't officially given any reason for his suspension, sources in the party said that it was indeed because of his “lavish lifestyle”.

A senior leader of CPI(M) said “We had already warned Banerjee not to flaunt his personal lavish lifestyle after the controversy regarding his ostensible display of personal belongings like Mont Blanc pen and Apple watch. But doesn't seem to have taken such warnings seriously.”

The suspension of Banerjee has created a rift within the CPI(M). While a section of leaders feel that there are no solid grounds for suspending Banerjee, others say that that the party is for the poor, and such show of wealth would tarnish its image.

“We cannot comment on anything right now . We will look at the complaints that were made against Banerjee and then say anything,” Md Salim said.

Banerjee, on his part, has refused to speak to the media. 

First published: 2 June 2017, 18:44 IST