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Kolkata: AFTER CPI-M, Bhaichung Bhutia has ditched Trinamool as well!

The former skipper of the Indian soccer team today announced his resignation from Mamata Banerjee’s Trinamool that he had joined late in 2013 severing past proximity with the CPI-M.

“As of today I have officially resigned from the membership and all the official and political posts of All India Trinamool Congress party. I am no longer a member or associated with any political party in India. #politics,” Bhutia tweeted this morning.

Trinamool, which had fielded him in the 2014 Lok Sabha polls from Darjeeling and in the 2016 Assembly polls from Siliguri facing defeat, was unaware of the Bhaichung’s move. “The party not aware of any such development and hence, I will not make a comment,” Trinamool secretary general Partha Chatterjee reacted to queries from reporters.

Although, the 41-year-old icon has laid stress on “no longer being associated with any political party,” those who have observed Bhaichung over the years believe that he could be looking for a more rewarding political career. It can be in the BJP or the Sikkim Democratic Front, the ruling party of his home state Sikkim.

Bhaichung has switched off his mobile phone since morning, hence could not be contacted for a word on the speculations.

CPI-M ruled Left Front was in power in Bengal until 2011. In 2006 Assembly polls, Bhaichung had extensively campaigned for the then CPI-M minister Asok Bhattacharya in the Nepali dominated pockets of Siliguri.

After winning, Bhattacharya rewarded him by facilitating the allocation of a 1.3 bigha commercial plot on the Siliguri Regulated Market premises to Bhaichung’s firm ~ Free Kick Ventures Pvt Ltd ~ for starting a highway-style petrol pump. The plot was given on 30 years lease for a one-time payment of only Rs 2 lakh and an annual rent of Rs 25,000.

Bhaichung was also allocated a five-cottah residential plot at EM Bypass in Siliguri at a highly subsidised rate of Rs 2-lakh per cottah.

After Left Front was thrown out of power in 2011, Bhaichung distanced from the CPI-M. He joined the Trinamool in 2013 and was at once allocated a 16.3-acre plot at Matigara in Siliguri for a proposed football academy.

Now that he has ditched Trinamool as well, the icon could be looking for an even bigger field to play!