CPM slams Somnath for attack on Karat
CPM dismissed as "rubbish and false assertions" Somnath Chatterjee`s scathing comments on party chief Prakash Karat and said they "are just post-facto justifications of a person who defected to the ruling establishment".
New Delhi: The CPM on Monday dismissed as "rubbish and false assertions" ex-Lok Sabha Speaker Somnath Chatterjee`s scathing comments on party chief Prakash Karat and said they "are just post-facto justifications of a person who defected to the ruling establishment".
The CPM also claimed Chatterjee had agreed to quit as the Speaker before the vote of confidence in the UPA government in July 2008 but had backed out later reneging on his commitment given to the party.
81-year-old Chatterjee, who had targeted Karat in his latest book for the party`s debacle in the 2009 General Elections, was also slammed for dragging late party stalwart and former West Bengal chief minister Jyoti Basu`s name into the controversy over his resignation as Speaker.
In a statement, the CPM Poliburo accused the 10-time MP of making "false assertions" while a senior member Biman Bose said the remarks were rubbish and in bad taste and an attempt to malign the party.
"I feel that these are rubbish. If somebody wants to malign the party, that is in bad taste and is sad," Bose, the state party secretary, told reporters in Kolkata to a query on Chatterjee`s accusations.
Chatterjee, who was expelled from CPM for refusing to resign from the post of Lok Sabha Speaker before confidence vote in Parliament in July 2008 ignoring a party decision, has made several comments on Karat and the present party leadership in his book `Keeping the Faith: Memoirs of a Parliamentarian`.
He has said the "disastrous" policies and "misguided" actions of the "current" leadership had resulted in the major debacle in the 2009 general elections and that Karat`s "ignorance and intolerance" was demonstrated when he was summarily shown the door without a showcause notice.
Hitting back at Chatterjee, the CPM Politburo said " he had earlier in a letter to the Party dated July 9, 2008 agreed to abide by the decision of the Party and resign from the post of Speakership. He later backed out from this commitment to abide by the Party decision."
The CPM maintained that all the views expressed by Chatterjee "are just post-facto justifications of a person who defected to the ruling establishment".
It said Chatterjee has made "a number of false assertions" and maintained that it was "totally wrong to say that five members of the Politburo decided to expel him the day after the trust vote session of the Lok Sabha was held".
Rebutting his charges that Karat and a few others had decided to expel him, the statement said a meeting of the full Politburo on July 19, 2008, had taken the decision to take disciplinary action against Chatterjee. The Left parties had then decided to withdraw support to the UPA-I government over the nuclear deal.
The Politburo also maintained that it was "unfortunate that Chatterjee has sought to draw Basu`s name into this matter when he is no more".
Biman Bose also criticised Chatterjee in this regard. "Anybody can present a dead man`s comments anyway he wants. Whether he has really said that cannot be confirmed or denied."
Chatterjee had said that Basu during a meeting on July 12, 2008 had advised him not to resign as Speaker.