Kolkata: Former Lok Sabha Speaker
Somnath Chatterjee today hit out at CPI(M) saying the charges
it levelled against him were "a character assassination" and
the current political culture of the present leadership made
the party and Left politics "almost irrelevant".
In a hard-hitting statement issued here, Chatterjee,
who was expelled from CPI(M), referred to a rejoinder
published in CPI(M) mouthpiece `People`s Democracy` recently
accusing him of levelling baseless charges against the party
and said he was "amazed at the deliberate distortion of
The former Lok Sabha Speaker said he had never stated
that "the Left had some foreknowledge that the `cash-for-vote`
row during trust motion would come up in Parliament nor had I
insinuated that there was some coordination between BJP and
the Left in this matter.
"I get the impression that in its anxiety to justify
its unfathomable decision which has brought the party to its
present sorry state, the CPI(M) has made a desperate effort to
indulge in character assassination."
In the three-page statement, Chatterjee criticised
the party leadership for forging a Third Front "with disparate
elements with ridiculous assurance to its members that it
would come to power and would provide opportunity to the
party`s general secretary even to head such a government."
Chatterjee said sections of supporters and members of
CPI(M) had extreme reservation about the efforts of the
central leadership to cobble up a Third Front.
"They were bewildered at the almost desperate and comic
attempts of the leadership to come closer to certain political
outfits, many of which are embodiments of crime and corruption
in politics. Even the die-hard supporters of the party could
not countenance such deviations in its policies and basic
Recalling his long association with the CPI(M), he said
the rejoinder was a clear attempt to indulge in "deliberate
falsehood, calumny and character assassination" to justify the
party`s untenable action against a member who had without
self-interest been in state committee and Central committee.
He said it was now well-known that large section of the
party had not supported his arbitrary expulsion and claimed
that many members and active supporters of the CPI(M) were
still maintaining close touch with him.
Chatterjee said though many had urged him to give his
views on his expulsion, he had refrained from doing so.
"I did not make any allegation against the party and
admitted that the party had the right to expel me and there
was no occasion for me at all to ask for a review of the same
or to file an appeal."