Thiruvananthapuram: In stinging remarks, CPI-M veteran VS Achuthanandan warned on Saturday that his rival Pinarayi Vijayan will soon meet the fate of the once iconic Indian Communist SA Dange who was shown the door by the party.
Achuthanandan, a former Kerala chief minister who is now the opposition leader in the Assembly, made the statement following the recent murder of former CPI-M leader TP Chandrasekharan, 51.
After the killing, which police believe was done by CPI-M activists, Vijayan dubbed Chandrasekharan a "traitor". Achuthanandan, who was said to be close to the dead man, disputed the label.
Achuthanandan told reporters here that Vijayan`s remark was not the opinion of the Communist Party of India-Marxist.
"In our party things are different. It is not like the Congress where the final word is that of the party high command.
"In our party, an opinion is arrived at after detailed ideological discussions," he said.
Chandrasekharan, a former CPI-M firebrand, was killed in Onchiyam near here Friday night. Police said he was attacked with a bomb and then murdered. His face was disfigured.
Chandrasekharan was an active CPI-M leader in his hometown Onchiyam near Kozhikode till 2008. Later he formed the Revolutionary Marxist Party which unseated his former party in village councils around his home town.
"A situation that prevailed way back in 1964 prevailed at Onchiyam," Achuthanandan said, referring to the year when the Communist Party of India (CPI) split, leading to the formation of the present day CPI-M.
In April 1964, 38 National Council members of CPI walked out protesting against the wrong actions of Dange, who headed the CPI then.
Achuthanandan is the only living member of the 38.
"When Chandrasekharan walked out of CPI-M, party leaders should have prevailed upon them to return to the party fold through discussions," he said. "Instead they have been maligned," said Achuthanandan.
"It should be noted that though Dange ousted us, very soon he also was booted out by his party."
Asked why no one is questioning Vijayan if he is akin to Dange, the former chief minister said: "The time is not far and that will happen."
Pressed if his statement would be seen as violative of party discipline, he shot back: "At the opportune time and after discussions, it will be clear who has violated party discipline."
Veteran CPI-M leader T Sivadasa Menon reacted sharply to Achuthanandan`s statement, saying if he had any difference of opinion, he should say so at the appropriate party forum and not in a press conference.
Achuthanandan and Vijayan have been at loggerheads for close to a decade. In 2007, both were suspended from the politburo on grounds of breaching party discipline.