Terming as ‘strange' the statement of Chief Minister M. Karunanidhi that the Left has a natural affinity with the Maoists, the Communist Party of India (Marxist)'s senior Polit Bureau member and MP Sitaram Yechury said that his party had been relentlessly fighting the Naxals of yesterday and Maoists of today since it strongly believed in the system of parliamentary democracy.
“We are engaged in running battles with these forces of violence,” he said, adding that the CPI (M), which had facilitated the Nepalese Communist Party (Maoists) in Nepal to form a democratic government, had no affinity with the Maoists in India who pursued a path of violence.
“There they shunned violence. We helped them as they opted for a democratic, competitive politics,” he said.
The observation of Mr. Karunanidhi that the CPI (M) was encouraging the Maoists, he said, was “ideologically and factually” incorrect.
To a query whether it was an attempt to isolate the CPI (M), Mr. Yechury observed that ‘some agenda' was there.
“A senior political leader such as Karunanidhi, who has been in politics for decades at the national level and a man behind many secular alliances in the past, knows all but still makes such a statement because of his allies with whom he shares power,” he said.
He also wanted to know the reason behind the Chief Minister's outburst against the CPI (M).
Some powerful forces, he said, were against the Left since it opposed the Indo-U.S. nuclear deal and the government's economic reforms that were not in India' interest. They, in association with communal forces, had ‘ganged up' today to weaken the Left by importing Maoist violence into West Bengal.
“A grand alliance has been formed against us,” he said, asking the political parties to ‘rethink' the whole issue.
“Don't you want the parliamentary democracy to be strengthened,” he asked.
The West Bengal government's primary job now was to isolate the Maoists and restore civil administration in the areas controlled by them.
“We go to people and make them aware of fact that the Maoists do not believe in the system of parliamentary democracy. Our appeal to them is to give up the path of violence. It is not a law and order problem alone. It has to be tackled politically,” he said.
On the differences between China and India, he said they should be sorted out across the table.