The Telegraph
Since 1st March, 1999
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CPM vigil within party for rebel links

Midnapore, Oct. 27: Alarmed at reports of Naxalite elements making inroads into the CPM ranks, the party leadership has called for filtering them out of the district units.

Reports of the People’s War’s penetration of the party came up at an unpublicised meeting at the CPM’s Alimuddin Street headquarters on October 24. State leaders of the party met the secretaries of units in West Midnapore, Purulia and Bankura that day and called for internal vigil on party workers suspected of having Naxalite links.

CPM officials said the move has to be viewed in the context of the recent spate of Naxalite activities in the districts. “The general feeling is that members of the People’s War and other Naxalite outfits have sneaked into our units. There are several (functionaries) in our district units who can be said to have strong links with the Naxalites,” a party official said.

The leaders discussed the means to prevent the rebels from becoming popular. They also demanded more involvement from party workers and leaders to deal with the “crisis”. The need to have a smooth network between the party and residents of an area was emphasised.

Local leaders were asked to keep a “close watch” on party workers. “Once their involvement is established, they would be ousted from the party. We have already started warning all those who may have a close link with the Naxalites and will soon put up a network to find out the involvement of party workers,” said a senior CPM leader.

The leaders from the districts where the Naxalites have succeeded in weaning away CPM cadre chose not to speak. But they admitted the growing influence of the rebels in south Bengal and their popularity among residents.

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