I am the `elected' Trinamool chief: Panja
By Our Special Correspondent
NEW DELHI, JAN. 1. The former Union Minister, Mr. Ajit Panja, today claimed that he was the ``elected'' president of the All India Trinamool Congress and said he would soon petition the Election Commission on it.
Addressing a press conference after inaugurating the party office at his official residence here, Mr. Panja, who has been suspended from Trinamool Congress, said he was ``duly elected'' by some 3000-odd party members as per its constitution at Kolkata on December 22. He dubbed the election of Ms. Mamata Banerjee to the post a week later as ``fake''.
Ruling out any rapproachment, he charged Ms. Banerjee with being unsteady with her policies and changing her stand frequently.
He had dissociated from the party ever since Ms. Banerjee decided to pull out from the NDA Government in the wake of Tehelka tapes expose, which she since rejoined. Ms. Banerjee had never ``left'' the NDA. It was a tactical move to ``hoodwink' the people, especially the minorities, ahead of the West Bengal Assembly elections.
Asked whether he was opposed to Ms. Banerjee's re- induction into the Union Council of Ministers, Mr. Panja said the issue was prerogative of the Prime Minister.
Responding to the Trinamool Congress statement that he was suspended for alleged ``anti-party activities'', Mr. Panja said that he had read about the announcement and so far had not received any communication from the party.
Meanwhile, Mr. Panja called on the BJP President, Mr. K. Jana Krishnamurthi, at the party headquarters here.
``Mr. Panja called on our party president only to greet him on the occasion of New Year'', the BJP spokesman, Mr. Sunil Shastri, told correspondents.
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