The CPM’s crisis in Kerala just before the bye-elections has raised questions over violence, factionalism and indiscipline within the state body. It has also given an opportunity to other political fronts to criticize and attack the CPM party leadership for not being able to tackle their internal issues properly. Even the CPI is ready to tell big brother CPI(M) to get its house in order. Sudhakar Reddy, the General Secretary of CPI spoke to Panini Anand. Extracts:
How do you see the present crisis of CPI (M) in Kerala?
The statement by CPI(M) leader M.M. Mani in Kerala is very disturbing and unwarranted. Rather, it is a disastrous statement. Violence is not the political character of the left parties and it can’t be justified at all. This whole thing about lists and revenge, which was made public, is very disgusting. Although we need to check the authenticity of these statements, we condemn the statement strongly. I think that CPI(M) should do an inquiry at the soonest and examine the statements (especially about violence) coming out in public.
What can the CPM do to deal with the present crisis in the state?
It's the CPI(M)’s internal matter but if it was our party (CPI), we would have definitely taken a strong action immediately. This is not what left parties should reflect. This is not the way we function and do things. These statements are very disturbing.
Do you think the present crisis also affects the overall image of the left politics and the left movement?
Definitely it will damage the image… It’s affecting the whole left movement. But we don’t know how they [the CPI(M)] are going to deal with the issue. Whatever steps they take, they should try to resolve it as soon as possible.
But it's not a new thing in Kerala. There have been issues for last couple of years. It’s ‘Popular face’ versus ‘Party face’ in Kerala. Do you think that central leadership of CPM is unable to tackle the issue?
It's CPI(M)’s internal matter and I will rather not comment on it but, yes, there is a problem and they need to address it. Now, how they settle it, we leave it to them. I would have commented if they were in power in Kerala because then the crisis affects the administrative things also, but they are in opposition. Let them handle their internal matters.