Laxmi Ratan Shukla, former minister of sports and youth services and MLA from north Howrah, said he is ‘quitting’ politics for the time being.

While speaking to reporters today for the first time since he quit state government as minister and ruling Trinamul Congress on 5 January the former skipper of Bengal cricket team said that he would get engrossed in sports instead of political field.

“I am quitting politics for the time being. I was sincere and honest in the field of sports and politics,” Shukla said.

“A person who performs better in the field always wins the match. Common people have voted Mamata Banerjee to power in our state,” he made this significant statement when asked whom does he want to see as chief minister of Bengal in the coming Assembly polls in the state.

“I want to concentrate on sports and have no grievances against anybody. I also want to complete the term as an MLA and convey my thanks to the chief minister Miss Mamata Banerjee and senior leaders in her party,” he said.

“Something should be kept in your memory instead of making it open to public,” he said while asked about reasons behind his resignations from the state cabinet and Trinamul Congress.

Sources in the Trinamul Congress said that an ongoing fissure in the party’s Howrah district leadership might have prompted Shukla to resign from Cabinet and party.

Intra-party feud between two groups belonging to the state cooperation minister and senior leader Arup Roy and Rajib Banerjee, state forest minister, respectively was instrumental behind his resignation. Laxmi belongs to Rajib Banerjee group in the district.

Hardly, four days ago TMC MP from Howrah constituency Prasun Banerjee criticised Shukla as party president of Howrah district unit. With his resignations some TMC MLAs and leaders like Baishali Dalmia and Rathin Chakraborty have raised their voices against a section of influential party leaders and a minister in Howrah.