Kolkata: The four-day delegate session of the 22nd State Conference of the Communist Party of India (Marxist) began here on Monday.
The day’s deliberations revolved around the draft political-organisational report and a separate proposal delineating the role of the CPI(M) at the State government, panchayat and municipality levels. General secretary of the party Prakash Karat delivered the inaugural address.
Mr. Karat spoke of the political developments in the national and international scenario and dwelt on the CPI(M)’s responsibilities in the developing situation. He cautioned against the designs of imperialist forces that were impinging on the country’s foreign policies and its economic sovereignty.
The strategic alliance developing between India and the U.S. came under criticism. Mr. Karat pointed out that the sustained opposition to the nuclear deal between the two countries by the Left parties had created a situation where it could not be taken forward without the consent of the Left.
The strong line taken against the deal by the CPI(M) leadership had thwarted the operationalisation of the deal. This had made the party the primary target of a campaign launched by the imperialist forces and though it was directed overtly at West Bengal, in actual terms the attack was against the party at the national level, Mr. Karat said.
Discussions on the thrust on greater industrialisation given by the government and the misgivings on certain issues among some constituents of the ruling Left Front who have been airing their discontent in public are also expected to be taken up in the session.
While the conference is being held a few weeks ahead of the CPI(M) 19th Party Congress scheduled for March in Coimbatore, it comes at a time the party in West Bengal is gearing its rank and file for the panchayat polls due in May.
Over 900 people, including 610 delegates, besides several invitees are participating in the conference. Among the special invitees are Polit Bureau members, S.R. Pillai, Sitaram Yechury and Brinda Karat, besides Mr. Karat. Also to be invited are the secretaries of the CPI(M) State committees of Orissa, Jharkhand, Bihar, Assam and Tripura.
Prior to the commencement of the conference, the party’s flag was unfurled in the Girish Park by veteran Marxist leader Jyoti Basu. The party flag was simultaneously unfurled at CPI(M) offices across the State.