The national and State leadership of the Communist Party of India (CPI) will converge here beginning Saturday for a review of the outcome of the recent local body elections and to take some crucial decisions relating to the party organisation.
The party, along with the rest of the ruling Left Democratic Front (LDF), had fared badly in the elections and this has given rise to the criticism that the party leadership was unable to intervene effectively in the election effort and was largely ineffective on the campaign front.
Unlike on most such occasions in the past, the Communist Party of India (Marxist) and the CPI had worked very closely this time and the CPI(M) had conceded CPI's demands in most places. There were, however, many places, most notably in Kottayam and Ernakulam districts, where the two parties could not resolve their differences. But the poor performance of the party as also the LDF is being attributed by the CPI leadership more to other larger factors than those centred on CPI(M)-CPI equations. Naturally, the party leadership's discussions would focus on these.
The party top brass is also worried about the poor health of CPI State secretary Veliyam Bhargavan.
He was himself not too willing to bear the heavy responsibility of leading the party in the State when he was re-elected to the post at the last party State conference.
How the party leadership would tackle the situation is still in the realm of conjecture, but there is every possibility of Mr. Bhargavan himself opting to step aside so that the leadership issue could be managed without giving rise to any internal problems. The CPI State secretariat is meeting here on Friday and its State executive committee on Saturday. These two meetings would be followed by a two-day meeting of the party State council on November 14 and 15.
Party general secretary A.B. Bardhan and deputy general secretary K. Sudhakar Reddy will attend the State executive and council meetings, which would also give the leadership the opportunity to take a call on Mr. Bhargavan's health-related issues.