Rail Budget 2012 row: Trivedi, TMC in an open war

CNN-IBN
Mar 17, 2012 at 04:20pm IST

New Delhi: The exit of Railway Minister Dinesh Trivedi looks imminent with internal pressure mounting on him to quit. Trinamool Congress MP Kalyan Banerjee spoke to Dinesh Trivedi and asked him to put in his papers. "I had suggested an honourable exit for Trivedi. He knows the party doesn't want him," Kalyan Banerjee said.

But the Railway Minister has hit back and told Kalyan Banerjee that party supremo Mamata Banerjee should give it in writing and that he'll resign only after a written order.

Speaking to CNN-IBN, he said, "I will abide by the party's decision. If I wanted to stay in my chair, I could have. I don't want to be humiliated like this. I have done my bit. Let them convey it to me properly. I will resign in a day or two."

However, Trinamool MP Kabir Suman defended Trivedi, saying, "Dinesh Trivedi has been honest throughout, he hasn't made a single negative statement, and this is the reward he gets? This is undemocratic."

Earlier, the Congress agreed to remove Dinesh Trivedi as the Railway Minister, according to sources in the Trinamool Congress. However, sources say that the Congress has told Mamata that sacking Trivedi would give him sympathy and make him a hero.

Sources said that Dinesh Trivedi will remain the Railway Minister for the weekend at least.

Congress sources have asked the TMC to wait till next week after the Prime Minister's reply to the Presidential address and Rail Budget in Parliament on Monday.

Sources added that even as the Congress has indicated to remove Trivedi as Rail Minister, the party has told the TMC that a mid-session swearing-in will give handle to the Opposition.

Railway Minister Dinesh Trivedi came under fire from his party colleagues and Mamata Banerjee for hiking fares in the Rail Budget 2012.

Mamata firm on replacing Dinesh Trivedi

Firm on the removal of Railway Minister Dinesh Trivedi, Trinamool Congress chief Mamata Banerjee asserted that it was time for Prime Minister Manmohan Singh to act on her plea to replace Trivedi with another party nominee Mukul Roy.

"I have already said whatever I have had to say. Now the government has to decide. Mukul Roy will be our candidate for the Railway minister," Mamata said during the filing of nominations for Rajya Sabha elections by Roy, the Union minister of state for Shipping, and three others.

(With additional information from PTI)

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