School jobs scam: West Bengal minister gets sacked from the cabinet
Six days after his arrest, West Bengal Chief Minister and Trinamool Congress supremo Mamata Banerjee yesterday sacked Partha Chatterjee from her cabinet and suspended him from all party posts.
The decision of 70-year-old Partha's removal came after another Rs 29 crore in cash and five kg of gold jewellery were seized during a raid on Wednesday. The Enforcement Directorate (ED) conducted the raid in a flat owned by his 30-year-old close aide Arpita Mukherjee in Belghoria of North 24 Parganas district.
On Friday, the ED made the first seizure of Rs 20.21 crore in cash, Rs 89 lakh worth gold ornaments and foreign currency worth Rs 54 lakh from a flat of Arpita in Tollygunge of South Kolkata.
Partha was in charge of several key ministries, including commerce, industry, parliamentary affairs, electronics and technology. He was also the TMC secretary general having joined the party in 1999.
The decision of dismissing him as a minister was made in a cabinet meeting while his removal from party posts came after a meeting of the party's top leadership in Kolkata yesterday evening.
On Saturday, the ED arrested Partha and Arpita in connection with the multi-crore Rupees scam in schoolteacher recruitment.
"I have removed Partha Chatterjee as a minister. My party takes strict actions ...," Mamata told the media in Kolkata yesterday.
Partha and Arpita are now in ED custody.