KERALA

Achuthanandan should leave CPI(M): Kodikunnil

`Otherwise, he will be expelled from party'

Staff Reporter

KOLLAM: Kodikunnil Suresh, Kerala Pradesh Congress Committee general secretary, said here on Monday that it was time Leader of the Opposition V.S. Achuthanandan left the Communist Party of India-Marxist (CPI-M) with dignity rather than wait for that party to expel him.

At a press conference, he said that the Pinarayi group within the CPI(M) had bulldozed the faction led by Mr. Achuthanandan. "It portends that Mr. Achuthanandan will sooner than later face the same fate of the expelled CPI(M) leaders M.V. Raghavan and K.R. Gowri.''

Mr. Suresh said the Pinarayi faction's game plan behind the constitution of the party's State secretariat by sidelining Mr. Achuthanandan's interests had the full backing of the CPI(M) central leadership, which had been hijacked by reformists.

When State secretary of the CPI(M) Pinarayi Vijayan said that "Mr. Achuthanandan is the number one in the party,'' it connoted that the latter would be the first person to be expelled, Mr. Suresh said. The anti-Achuthanandan moves by the Pinarayi group were aimed at facilitating an alliance with those who were recently expelled from the United Democratic Front (UDF).

`Ban on entry'

He said that after the Malappuram conference of the party, the CPI(M) had banned Mr. Achuthanandan's entry into Kannur district. "That ban was lifted during the Assembly byelections from Azhikode and Koothuparamba.''

On the functioning of the Congress, he said that with the unwanted elements thrown out, the party would now work in a healthy manner. Mr. Suresh wanted to know why the so-called pro- Karunakaran MLAs were not asked to resign when Mr. Karunakaran himself had quit his Rajya Sabha seat.

To a question on the prospects of the UDF in the coming local body elections, he said that it was an issue that would be addressed at the right time.

He called upon the Election Commission to inquire into how 24-lakh voters in the State vanished from the voters' list.

He wanted the State Government to take more effective measures for paddy procurement. The pension dues of all retired cashew workers should be cleared at the earliest, he added.

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