Polit Bureau to form panel to study his complaints
The sharp division in the State unit of the Communist Party of India (Marxist) between party veteran V.S. Achuthanandan and the dominant section led by party State secretary Pinarayi Vijayan has come to a head with the CPI(M) Polit Bureau deciding to reject the State leadership’s demand for Mr. Achuthanandan’s ouster as Leader of the Opposition in the Kerala Assembly.
It has, however, dealt him a severe blow by accepting the State committee’s decision to expel three of his staff members, considered his close confidantes, from the party.
According to information available here late Sunday evening, the Polit Bureau took the decision after a detailed discussion on related issues and an interaction with members of the Central committee from the State in New Delhi on Sunday.
The Polit Bureau has also decided to form a commission to go into Mr. Achuthanandan’s complaints against the faction led by Mr. Vijayan, including on issues connected with the T.P. Chandrasekharan murder case.
The three members of Mr. Achuthanandan’s personal staff who have been expelled are his additional private secretary V.K. Sasidharan; press secretary K. Balakrishnan; and personal assistant A. Suresh, all party members for long. Mr. Balakrishnan was at one time editor-in-charge of party’s main literary publication Deshabhimani weekly. The expelled staff members had been accused of leaking party secrets to the media. Mr. Achuthanandan had objected strongly to the State party’s findings against them, stating that it amounted to holding him as well guilty of these charges.
However, the Polit Bureau appears to have chosen to strike some kind of a balance between the two sides by accepting the State leadership’s decision to expel Mr. Achuthanandan’s staff members even while allowing him to remain Leader of the Opposition in the State.
Action against the three staff members had been pending for over two years. Mr. Achuthanandan had succeeded in delaying a decision by warning the party leadership of serious consequences if it approved the State’s committee decision to expel the three. He had stopped attending party State secretariat and State committee meetings ever since the party State committee approved the report submitted by P. Karunakaran, MP, who had been asked by the committee to go into the charges against him.
Neither Mr. Achuthanandan nor Mr. Vijayan has reacted to the latest developments in the party. Emerging from the CPI(M) panel meetings, they would only say that party general secretary Prakash Karat would announce the Polit Bureau’s decisions.
State secretariat meet
The CPI(M) State secretariat is meeting here for two days beginning Monday. The party State committee would meet for the following two days. Mr. Karat and Polit Bureau member S. Ramachandran Pillai would attend these meetings, which would discuss the issues relating to Mr. Achuthanandan’s stance vis-à-vis the party State leadership.