The Telegraph
Since 1st March, 1999
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Party stick for EMS critic

Thiruvananthapuram, Aug. 24 (PTI): The state CPM today divested veteran Marxist ideologue P. Govinda Pillai of all party posts for openly criticising party leaders and policies in an interview to a Malayalam literary magazine.

The party’s state committee reviewed the matter on persistent pressure from different rungs of the CPM after Pillai, a committee member himself, was let off with a censure a couple of months ago for making anti-party comments, a release said.

“Pillai has been removed from all elected positions in the party as well as from the general editorship of the complete works of E.M.S. Namboodiripad,” said the party release issued after a three-day meet.

General secretary Harkishen Singh Surjeet was present on the first two days of the meeting.

“I accept the decision. Whatever assignment the party entrusts me with will be carried out,” Pillai told reporters shortly after the committee announced its decision.

Pillai, a frontline ideologue of the party for the last several decades, had in the controversial interview criticised ideological positions of Namboodiripad and current leaders, including Surjeet.

Pillai, however, today said he regretted that his views on Namboodiripad were not understood in their true sense. He also said many mistakes had crept into the text of the interview.

The case was re-opened after the CPM politburo asked the committee to look into the matter afresh as it involved serious breach of discipline by a senior member. The politburo felt the committee had earlier taken a lenient view of the matter.

“Comrade P.G. (as Pillai is known in party circles) should have come out with open admission of his mistakes. However, he kept total silence when different media went ahead with news and analyses (on views expressed in the interview) blaming the party stands,” the release said.

“Pillai’s refusal to openly justify the party stands and admit his mistakes can not be justified. There has been a strong feeling in different rungs of the party that Pillai was earlier spared the punishment he deserved,” it added.

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