Mar 15, 2012 08:12 PM IST | Source:

Will quit if PM or Mamata ask me to do so: Trivedi

The PM says that Mamata Banerjee will be consulted before a final call on Dinesh Trivedi's resignation is taken.

New Delhi: Railway Minister Dinesh Trivedi, whose removal has been demanded by his party leader and Trinamool Congress boss Mamata Banerjee, on Thursday said he has not resigned as yet. However, he made it clear that he would resign the moment the Prime Minister or Mamata Banerjee ask him to do.

"No one has sought my resignation till now. My job to to get the Budget passed in Parliament. I have a duty to get the Railway Budget passed. This is my prime duty. The moment my leader or the Prime Minister asks me I will resign," said Trivedi.

Trivedi said he would also answer questions related to the Railway Budget in Parliament on Thursday and added that he was grateful to the nation for the support that he had received for his budget. "I am getting messages from all over the world and I am truly touched," said the Railway Minister.

Prime Minister Manmohan Singh, too, issued a statement saying that he would consult Trinamool Congress supremo and West Bengal Chief Minister Mamata Banerjee before taking a final call on Trivedi's resignation.

The Prime Minister also denied receiving Trivedi's resignation and said that he would consider it when the situation arises.

Adding to the confusion over Trivedi's fate was Trinamool Congress parliamentary party chief in the Lok Sabha, Sudip Bandyopadhyay.

Bandyopadhyay made contradictory statements over Trivedi's resignation leading to speculations over what exactly his party desired.

"Trinamool Congress has never asked the minister to resign. The UPA will complete its tenure. There is no threat to the government. The issue will be settled between the government and the Trinamool Congress," said Bandyopadhyay.

However, just a few minutes earlier, Bandyopadhyay had addressed the media outside Parliament and said that a new railway minister would be appointed in place of Trivedi and it was the prerogative of the Trinamool Congress to decide who would get the portfolio.

Mamata had asked the Prime Minister on Wednesday night to sack Trivedi for announcing an across-the-board increase in passenger fares in the Railway Budget.

Union Finance Minister Pranab Mukherjee, however, on Thursday told the Lok Sabha that no resignation letter has been received by the Prime Minister's Office.

The West Bengal Chief Minister shot off a letter to the Prime Minister seeking dismissal of Trivedi and replacing him by her trusted aide Mukul Roy as Railway Minister after the former presented a bold budget on Wednesday. She made it clear that she would not allow the hike in passenger fares and demanded complete rollback.

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