KOCHI: The 1982 Vijayawada party congress of the CPM — led by then general secretary EMS Namboodiripad — after assessing the prevailing political scenario in the country, decided not to align with any political party backed by religious minorities or communal forces. Reason? The RSS-led BJP was slowly making its mark in India and the Left wanted no part in stoking majority communalism in the country.
The Kerala CPM however decided not to exclude anyone who had stood by the Left in its trying times. The CPM-led front was then in alliance with the All India Muslim League. A majority of leaders decided not to fall in line with the national leadership. Only one prominent leader from Kannur spoke firmly against the alliance with the League, and that was Pinarayi Vijayan.
Ironically, almost two decades later, the CPM made many an overture towards minority parties. Going by this, what is being referred to as a casual response by new LDF convener E P Jayarajan on Wednesday inviting Muslim League to the Left fold, sure has more than what meets the eye. The League conundrum has been a perennial headache for the CPM for long.
The CPM has time and again been left politically bruised, whenever it has had a close shave with the League. In fact it was the League fiasco that cost Nayanar his politburo berth in the 1985 Kolkata party congress that paved the way for a relatively junior V S Achuthanandan to make it to the politburo. Incidentally, it was VS who stood like a rock against getting the Indian Union Muslim League into the Left fold.
It was the League alliance debate that forced prominent leader M V Raghavan out of the party in 1986. MVR, once a crowd-puller in the CPM, had presented an alternative document in the party state conference held in Kochi in 1985, that later resulted in his exit from the party. Of late, the CPM has been unleashing a major attack on the League. If the IUML becomes part of the LDF, the party will have to keep proving its secular credentials. The Sangh would then be more than happy to cash in on the same, resulting in CPM losing Hindu vote-base.