The rift within the Communist Marxist Party (CMP) led by M.V. Raghavan over the issue of whether or not to forge a political association with the Communist Party of India (Marxist) has now come to the fore in the aftermath of the appointment of CMP leader K.R. Aravindakshan as the party’s acting general secretary to ‘temporarily’ replace its ailing founder.

The crack in the CMP has its fallout in this district where the party was born in 1986 after Mr. Raghavan was expelled from the CPI(M). The decision of the CMP Polit Bureau meeting held on January 7 to elect Mr. Aravindakshan as acting general secretary and to suspend party leader and Polit Bureau member C.A. Ajeer has divided the party here and elsewhere. Though the political differences within the CMP on a section of party leadership’s overtures for making it closer to the CPI(M) and to the Left Democratic Front (LDF) are manifested in the current developments in it, the rift within Mr. Raghavan’s family over the administration of the Pappinissery Visha Chikitsa Society (PVCS) has also reflected in the split in the party.

The society with Mr. Raghavan as its president controls the Snake Park, Parassinikkadavu Ayurveda Hospital and Anti-Venom Hospital at Pappinissery.

Decision questioned

The party Polit Bureau’s decision has already been questioned by senior party leader and Polit Bureau member C.P. John and Mr. Ajeer, a close aide of Mr. Raghavan, after his expulsion for the party. They dubbed the Polit Bureau meeting as illegal.

Emergency meeting

In an emergency district committee meeting held at the CMP office here on Thursday morning, party district secretary C.K. Narayanan, who is seen as supporting the Aravindakshan faction, was removed from the post and Mr. Ajeer was elected district secretary.

Mr. Ajeer told The Hindu that the latest developments in the party were the continuation of the political struggle of the large number of party workers and leaders against the moves of Mr. Aravindakshan and his supporters to take the party into the LDF camp.

He also said his ‘‘illegal’’ suspension was part of a bid to target him for extending his support to the decision to bring in Mr. Raghvan’s son M.V. Girish as president-in-charge of the PVCS on November 1 last to replace the veteran leader’s son-in-law E. Kunhiraman, who as one of the society’s directors had been in charge of its administration ever since Mr. Raghavan stopped active role in its administration because of his ailment.

While the Polit Bureau meeting was claimed to have been held here on January 7, Mr. Ajeer said that no Polit Bureau meeting was held here that day.

The decision was taken at a ‘‘secret meeting’’ held at Aluva on January 6, he said. The party district secretary was removed for attending that meeting, he said.

Mr. Raghavan ceased to be active in politics since September last when he had been admitted to the Pariyaram Medical College for a few weeks following cardiac and other ailments. His own comments favouring Left unity following CPI(M) State secretary Pinarayi Vijayan’s courtesy visit to his residence here in April last were seen as a gesture of a rapport between the CMP and CPI(M).

MVR not removed

Special Correspondent writes from Thiruvananthapuram: CMP Polit Bureau member G. Sugunan said that the party had not decided to remove Mr. Raghavan from the post of party general secretary and appoint Mr. Aravindakshan to the post.

In a statement here on Thursday, Mr. Sugunan said the decision was to give temporary charge to Mr. Aravindakshan in view of Mr. Raghavan’s poor health. The decision was taken as instructed by Mr. Raghavan, he said.