RESULTS: CPIM leaders pat each other; belittle and laugh away defeat in LS polls

Yechury in Delhi on Sunday … “Taming of the Shrew”


NNEW DELHI: The CPIM politburo again behaved like an ostrich, hiding its head in sand, reeled out the usual anti-establishment jargon, and called upon the people to get ready for a new struggle against the “anti-people” policies of the new Modi-led BJP-NDA government. This, even before it was sworn in. Party secretary Sitaram Yechury, a tame figure for now, tried to win sympathy by offering to take the responsibility for the party’s debacle and hang up his boots, but the jaded figures in the politburo ruled that this was not necessary. 

The red leaders literally patted each other for the defeat, belittled and laughed away the drubbing the party faced everywhere in the Lok Sabha polls, and Yechury reeled out usual rubbish as “reasons” for defeat.

Yechury told the media after the meeting that PM Modi, against whom he has been seeking to raise the nation’s mood in the past five years, raised the bogey of national security and war hysteria and fooled the people into voting for the BJP. 

This goes to show yet again that those who lead the party from the front have no ear to the ground or touch with the common man. The season of Yechury’s leadership of the party saw its electoral prospects touching the nadir. His own overzealous approach to co-habit with the Congress party at the national level, gave the impression that he had an agenda behind the agenda. The CPIM suffered. 

Under Yechury’s leadership, the party today does not have the energy even to wag its tail, something that was reserved for display before Sonia Gandhi and the Chinese Communist party leadership.

The politburo was not willing to undertake any realistic analysis as to why the party has touched the ground to this level. 

The Kerala leaders in the politburo claimed the stand on Sabarimala was not the reason for the party’s poll defeat. The politburo seemed to accept this, though a detailed analysis will be done by the party. The central leadership of the party and Yechury in specific were all for allowing entry of women in Sabarimala after a verdict favouring this came from the Supreme Court. They saw it as a progressive measure. Reason why no accusing finger was pointed at chief minister Pinarayi Vijayan or the state party leadership at the politburo meet. 

The Kerala leaders told the PB that confusion was created in voters’ mind about the pro-Congress stands taken by the CPIM leadership at the national level. Yechury caught on this and asked the Kerala comrades why they did not point this out earlier. 

West Bengal party secretary Surjya Kanta Mishra, a prop of Yechury, offered to resign his post because of the virtual decimation of the party under his leadership, but Yechury and the rest of the politburo asked him to hold on. There was the palpable fear that if Mishra was allowed to quit, the same logic could extend to Yechury as well, and to the Kerala leaders too. So, there was truce for now, and everyone in the politburo patted everyone else in the pack for the sighting of a sense of unity at this difficult hour. 

Yechury, in an effort to bail him out, noted that the CPIM was facing odds since 2009 — and what happened now was not new. “We would discuss matters in detail at the central committee meet from June 7,” he said.

Overall, Yechury had no face to question the Kerala leadership; and the Kerala leadership had no locus standi to ask Yechury why he failed. Both sides settled for a rare sense of bonhomie, even if it meant the party’s future was compromised. The Communists are on the run for cover. Their collective fear, for now, is where Modi and Amit Shah would turn the screws on them now. 

Meanwhile, the state committees of the party in Kerala, Tripura and West Bengal will soon be meeting to take stock of the poll reverses. The Kerala unit will hold its meeting on May 30 to June 1. IHN-NN


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