The Trinamool Congress (TMC) on Sunday alleged that Dinesh Trivedi, who resigned from the Rajya Sabha on Friday, took the ‘House for a ride’ and was ‘allowed’ to use the floor of the House for his ‘devious political ends’.
Soon after Trivedi announced his resignation, the Trinamool Congress had lashed out at him and called him ‘ungrateful’, while the Bharatiya Janata Party said he was welcome to join the saffron camp.
Trivedi’s resignation came amidst an exodus from the Mamata Banerjee’s party ahead of the West Bengal assembly polls.
Trivedi, a former railway minister and two-time Lok Sabha MP, was sent to Rajya Sabha last year by the TMC after losing the parliamentary polls in 2019. He is reported to have had some issues with a senior Rajya Sabha member of the party for the past few months.
In a letter to the Rajya Sabha Chairman, party’s chief whip in the House Sukhendu Sekhar Ray said the TMC had recommended only two names as speakers for the discussion on the Union Budget 2021-22, but Trivedi was not among them.
The TMC’s allotted time on the discussion was exhausted after both the speakers spoke on their designated days, Ray said as he questioned why Trivedi was allowed to speak despite this.
‘At about 1.25 pm on 12 February 2021, when the Hon’ble Finance Minister was about to give reply to the Budget discussion, one member of AITC, Sri Dinesh Trivedi, since resigned, was allowed to speak for about four minutes from 1.25 pm to 1.29 pm, although his name was not recommended by the AITC as speaker in the Budget discussion and no time was left for the party,’ he said in the letter which has been accessed by PTI.
Trivedi, had said while resigning that he felt ‘suffocated’ by the violence in West Bengal and his inability to do anything about it.
He further said that Trivedi’s seat was allotted in the Rajya Sabha Gallery, but he came down inside the Council Chamber and started to speak and ‘rambled’ on his personal political motives ‘from a seat of his choice’.
‘The Chair did not take any action to stop such unauthorised intervention in Budget discussion, yet he spoke against the party he belonged to and made certain wild allegations against the AITC to substantiate his proposed resignation from the House,’ Ray charged.
‘The incident as narrated hereinabove and the manner in which Sri Trivedi grossly misutilised the floor of the House for his devious political ends and also the way he was allowed to have taken the House for a ride is absolutely unprecedented, unwarranted and is devoid of not only decorum and etiquette as envisaged in ‘Rajya Sabha at Work’, but also against all rules, norms and traditions of this august House,’ Ray said.
It is a matter of great concern that although there were adequate mechanism under the rules to restrain the unruly member, it was not adopted, Ray charged.
He also said that there is a specific rule to use for resigning from Rajya Sabha by a Member, but there doesn’t exist any rule by which a Member is authorised to announce his resignation on the floor of the House.
He said that the development that took place on February 12 was ‘absolutely beyond the scope of the rules, regulations, practices and traditions of this august House’.
‘I would urge upon you to immediately constitute an inquiry into the matter and to find out the reasons behind such unprecedented illegality committed through the deplorable action or inaction, as stated and/or any connivance or conspiracy that worked behind the scene to malign the AITC and for taking reasonable decisions at your end in the matter at the earliest,’ he said.
Trivedi is the fourth senior TMC leader to quit the ruling party in West Bengal in the last two months after Suvendu Adhikari and Rajib Banerjee, who had switched over to the BJP and Laxmi Ratan Shukla, who had expressed his desire to quit politics.
This is not the first time that Trivedi had openly aired his grievances against the party.
Earlier in March 2012, he had to step down as Railway Minister after Mamata Banerjee, who is also the TMC supremo, had opposed the railway budget placed by him.
He was replaced with the then TMC general secretary Mukul Roy.
Trivedi was also suspended from the party but was later reinstated.
While resigning from the Rajya Sabha, he had said, “If you sit here quietly and cannot do anything, then it is better that you resign from here and go to the land of Bengal and be with people.
“What I mean to say is the way violence is taking place in our state. Sitting here, I am feeling perplexed as to what should I do,” he had added.
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