Chatterjee, the secretary-general of TMC, held the portfolios of commerce & industry, parliamentary affairs, information technology and electronics, and public enterprises & industrial reconstruction in the state cabinet.
Mamata Banerjee will look after industry, other portfolios held by Partha Chatterjee for the time being.
The chorus for the removal of Chatterjee, who has been arrested by the Enforcement Directorate (ED), had been growing louder after nearly Rs 50 crore in cash was recovered from properties linked to him.
Huge amounts of cash, gold unearthed
The decision to expel Chatterjee comes a day after the ED recovered nearly Rs 50 crore in cash, and gold, believed to be in kilograms, from apartments linked to Chatterjee’s close associate Arpita Mukherjee.
Apart from this, the officials also recovered documents of properties and foreign exchange.
Put guilty in jail, I have never supported the corrupt, says Mamata
Chief minister and Trinamool chief Mamata Banerjee sought to dissociate the party and government from the affair, saying neither had anything to do with it, and demanded a speedy, time-bound trial to uncover the guilty and put them “behind bars for life”. The CM said the party and the government would “accept” the judicial verdict, whatever it was.
Chatterjee himself had said earlier that he had tried to call her, but his calls were unanswered.
The CBI, as directed by the Calcutta high court, is probing the alleged irregularities in the recruitment of Group-C and D staff as well as teachers in government-sponsored and aided schools on recommendations of the West Bengal School Service Commission (SSC). The ED is tracking the money trail in the scam.
Sack Partha Chatterjee from cabinet, demand TMC leaders
TMC leaders have been expressing concern about public perception over the recovery of the cash and gold at the properties of Chatterjee and his aide Arpita Mukherjee.
Earlier, TMC state general secretary Kunal Ghosh demanded that Chatterjee be removed from the ministry and all posts immediately for bringing “disgrace” to the Mamata Banerjee-led party and “shame to all of us”.
Chatterjee was the education minister when the alleged irregularities took place.
TMC’s mouthpiece “Jago Bangla” has stopped naming him either as a minister or the party’s secretary-general. However, his name remains in the printer’s line as its editor.