Tripura Left leader arrested for sexual offence

Agartala, Jan 9 (IANS) Veteran CPI-M leader Manoranjan Acharjee, who resigned from the Tripura assembly on December 10, 2015 after the party expelled him over allegations of sexual wrongdoing, was arrested on Saturday, police said. Acharjee has denied the charge.

“Police arrested Acharjee and presented him before a local court which sent him to police custody till January 12,” a police official said.

Speaker Ramendra Chandra Debnath told the assembly on Friday that he had accepted Acharjee’s resignation.

The 54-year-old Acharjee was elected to the assembly in 2008 and again in 2013 from Birganj constituency.

“I was let down by a section of party men who do not tolerate me,” Acharjee earlier told IANS. “I did not indulge in any misconduct on any minor girl.”

Following the hue and cry, police had suo motu registered an FIR against him.

Opposition Congress legislators raised questions in the assembly on Friday and demanded a statement by Chief Minister Manik Sarkar on the issue.

Sarkar, who also holds the home portfolio, later told the house that police would act at the earliest.

Sources in the Communist Party of India-Marxist (CPI-M) said the action followed a complaint by the mother of a minor girl in Amarpur in southern Tripura.

“The party carried out an internal inquiry into the molestation of a minor girl by Acharjee,” a source said. The legislator was then served show cause notice.

CPI-M state secretary and party’s central committee member Bijan Dhar said: “Acharjee’s reply was not satisfactory. He was then expelled from the party and asked to resign from the membership of the state assembly.”

The woman also complained to Chief Minister Manik Sarkar.

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