Calcutta, Sept. 20: Chief minister Buddhadeb Bhattacharjee today expressed concern over factionalism in the CPM and said those who encouraged “groupism” would be dealt with by the organisation.
Bhattacharjee was addressing a meeting organised by the CPM’s district unit at Shampa Mirza Nagar in South 24-Parganas to condole the death of Abul Basar, a former district party secretary.
He referred to the Party For Democratic Socialism (PDS) floated by former CPM central committee member Saifuddin Chowdhury and former secretary of the party’s district unit Samir Putatunda. “Both the leaders had tried to set up sub-groups within the organisation and formed the PDS after they failed to take into their fold any important CPM leader,” Bhattacharjee said.
“A former secretary of your district had set up the PDS just before the last elections. I want to know where are they, what the PDS is doing now'” he asked.
“The party had tackled them with courage and strength. They had tried to break the party and their move had helped our political rivals like the Trinamul Congress and the Congress. People have realised this and rejected them,” the chief minister said.
“The CPM has been fighting factionalism from the very beginning. We had to form a separate party of our own in the sixties because the undivided communist party (the CPI) had been playing a role to please the Congress,” Bhattacharjee said.
Bhattacharjee’s comment is important because the CPM was virtually perplexed just before the last Assembly polls over formation of PDS by none but Putatunda who was the secretary of the party’s district unit. Many in the CPM had thought the party’s poll performance in the district would be affected seriously due to formation of PDS by Putatunda, who was considered as a CPM strongman in the district politics. Not only that the PDS had also fielded its candidate against Bhattacharjee in Jadavpur assembly segment.
“The CPI had undoubtedly taken the wrong path by supporting the Congress on a number of issues. We had opposed the CPI’s line of pleasing the Congress and was forced to split the party and formed CPM. We consider Congress our main enemy, unlike the CPI”, Bhattacharjee said.
“Next came the problem of Naxalite movement. In the name of armed revolution, they had started killing policemen and supporters of our party. We had controlled them at that time. Now some of their allies like Peoples War (PW) and Maoist Communist Centre (MCC) are trying to raise their heads again. Like the former Naxalites, these forces are also killing our party leaders and even the police men. We have to stop such irresponsible politics at any cost”, Bhattacharjee warned.
Describing CPM as a party of “poor people”, Bhattacharjee urged the leaders to follow the path and lifestyle of Basar “who had never committed any mistake in discharging his responsibilities as a true communist”. “We have to work for the poor people in our state be it we stay in the government or not. Follow the lifestyle of Basar Saheb, and don’t make any mistake in identifying your friends and enemies”, Bhattacharjee told the party supporters who had to wait long for attending the meeting due to torrential rain. CPM state secretary Anil Biswas also present at the meeting.