The Trinamool Congress leadership might have distanced itself from party leader Partha Chatterjee, who was arrested on Saturday by the Enforcement Directorate (ED) in connection with the multi-crore teacher recruitment scam, but for Chatterjee, Trinamool supremo and Chief Minister Mamata Banerjee continues to be the sole and final source of solace, as became evident from his arrest memo.
ED sources said that while taking anyone into custody, the agency sleuths follow a procedure of issuing an arrest memo.
That procedure involves asking the person to be arrested the name and contact number of one person whom he/she might wish to contact while in custody. The name and contact details of that person are mentioned in the arrest memo.
In this case, Chatterjee, who's the state Commerce and Industries Minister as well as the party's Secretary General, mentioned the name and mobile number of Mamata Banerjee, which were subsequently added to the arrest memo.
In fact, while being taken for medical check-up by the ED sleuths on Saturday afternoon, Chatterjee said, "I do not know where they are taking me. I tried, but I have not been able to contact my supreme leader Mamata Banerjee yet."
However, that the comment did not go down well with the Trinamool leadershid became evident later on Saturday when four top leaders of the party convened a press conference and announced that the onus of the entire development lay with Chatterjee, and not the party.
At the presser, state Transport Minister and Kolkata Mayor Firhad Hakim expressed doubts over Chatterjee's claim to have tried to contact Mamata Banerjee, saying, "As soon as an arrest is made, the phone is generally seized by the agency sleuths. So how could Partha Chatterjee try to contact the Chief Minister?"
The party leadership also made it clear that it will not hesitate to take disciplinary action against Chatterjee if he is found guilty at the end of the investigation.