The Communist Party of India (Marxist) [CPI(M)] State secretariat is understood to have rejected party Polit Bureau member M.A. Baby’s plea that he be permitted to resign his membership of the Assembly from Kundara.
Party sources said the request was met with strong opposition in the secretariat because of its implications for the party’s organisational principles and the complications that any such course of action would invite. The majority view was that it would set a difficult precedent. The matter would now go to the CPI(M) State committee, which begins its meeting here on Sunday, for eliciting its views on the issue and a final decision.Baby’s stand
The CPI(M) State secretariat, which concluded its two-day meeting here on Saturday, took up the issue in keeping with a decision to that effect from the party Polit Bureau and the Central committee. Mr. Baby had raised the demand at the Polit Bureau. He stood his ground at the secretariat meeting as well, and pointed out that there was no ethical justification for his continuation as an MLA representing Kundara where he had fallen behind his United Democratic Front rival N.K. Premachandran by nearly 7,000 votes in the just-concluded Lok Sabha elections.
Although he raised the issue only at the party Polit Bureau meeting, he had made his stand known well before that in TV interviews, causing a big embarrassment for the State CPI(M) leadership. What has left the party worrying is the way he has formulated the whole issue, as one in which ethical principles should take precedence over political pragmatism. The CPI(M) State committee is unlikely to take a decision at variance with that taken by the party secretariat, but the way discussion progresses in the State committee will be keenly watched.
The CPI(M) secretariat also took stock of the political situation and discussed the preparations for the upcoming local body elections and the party conferences.