Trinamool MP criticises Mamata, questions ‘change’ in Bengal


Kolkata: Once an ardent supporter, singer-turned-Trinamool Congress MP Kabir Suman has criticised Chief Minister Mamata Banerjee for the state of affairs in West Bengal, particularly political violence and crimes, including the sensational Park Street rape.

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“Farmers are committing suicide. Many government employees are not getting salaries. The student wing of Trinamool is following the same path of violence and force followed by (the rival CPI-M’s arm) SFI. There has been a significant rise in cases of molestation,” Kabir Suman, 62, wrote in his blog.

Suman, who was elected from the Jadavpur Lok Sabha constituency on the city’s outskirts in 2009, expressed shock over recent crimes in the state.

Many people are still in shock after the Park Street rape case. What is astonishing is that earlier Banerjee used to run to various places across the state to stand beside rape victims, but she has now bluntly denied the Park Street rape. She had said it is a cooked up case,” wrote Suman.

“Later on, when it was proved that rape did occur, she could have apologised but she didn’t bother. A cabinet minister tried to establish that the rape victim was an escort. How can a minister be so heartless?”

He referred to the incident in which two Communist Party of India-Marxist (CPI-M) leaders, including a former legislator, were killed in a clash in West Bengal’s Burdwan district.

The opposition Left Front blamed the ruling Trinamool Congress for the incident, but Banerjee claimed the deaths were the results of infighting in the CPI-M.

“Two CPI-M leaders were lynched to death. It is alleged they were killed by Trinamool supporters. But the chief minister said they died because of infighting. She also said there were a lot of cases against those who died – as if it is obvious for a person to get killed if he has criminal cases against him?”

Suman also took a dig at some of the intellectuals now seen around Banerjee, who came to power in May last year, dislodging the over three-decade-old Left Front government in the state.

“Those intellectuals who are right now dancing to Banerjee’s tunes had earlier either lobbied to stop Banerjee from taking part in the intellectuals’ movement opposing Nandigarm and Singur or were close to the CPI-M leadership,” he wrote.

Suman has had a strained relationship with the Trinamool leadership after he raised his voice against alleged corruption among a section of party leaders and openly condemned the joint forces operation in the Maoist-infested districts of the state.

He is credited with having changed the face of modern Bengali music in the 1990s with the ‘jeebonmukhi’ genre, writing and singing about people and their lives.

The former broadcast journalist once extensively covered Nicaragua during the Sandinista revolution and is known to be close to Leftist radicals.

He is known for albums like “Tomake Chai”, “Boshe Anko”, “Ichchhe Holo” and “Gaanola”.