Calcutta, Nov. 26: The Bengal government today remained tight-lipped about Taslima Nasreen’s possible return but the CPM held meetings in minority-dominated localities criticising her for hurting religious sentiments.
Before the party’s state secretariat decides on Thursday if Taslima can return, the CPM has sounded its leaders in minority areas and been told the situation is “still tense”.
A Muslim district committee member from Park Circus said “a good section” of the CPM’s minority supporters had joined Wednesday’s street violence demanding the author’s expulsion.
Public speeches by CPM leaders suggest a two-pronged strategy. While the CPM has officially put the ball in the Centre’s court, arguing that Taslima’s visa was beyond the Bengal government’s scope, its leaders have been distancing the party from her before the minorities.
Secretariat member Shyamal Chakraborty insisted that “neither the government nor our party forced Taslima to leave” but was silent on the CPM’s stand on her return. “We communists are secular but we do not believe in hurting (religious) sentiments. If somebody does it, it’s a crime,” he said.