CPI(M) general secretary Prakash Karat has faced flak in the politburo for the first time for his political line.
Less than a year ago, the party had fully endorsed his line to withdraw support from the Congress-led UPA government over the Indo-US nuclear deal. But now, after the CPI(M) got reduced to just 16 seats in the Lok Sabha elections, a section of the politburo today tore into him.
The party's Tamil Nadu and Andhra Pradesh units raised questions about why the central leadership ignored their views and joined hands with the AIADMK and TDP, respectively, and tried to form the Third Front when there was no popular support for this dream.
The West Bengal unit was wondering when the party's central leadership chose to withdraw support from the UPA government why it could not take the issue to the people and failed to explain them. West Bengal Chief Minister Buddhadeb Bhattacharjee skipped the party's politburo meeting today raising speculation of his expression of protest against Karat.
Although Karat's line faced severe criticism for the first time in the party, since he took over its reins in 2005, political insiders feel Karat still enjoys majority support both in the politburo and the Central Committee and will sail through this crisis.
According to insiders, Kerala Chief Minister V S Achuthanandan didn't miss this opportunity to slam Karat along with the state unit chief Pinarai Vijayan. The party, while doing an initial analysis of its debacle in Kerala, concluded that infighting has cost at least three seats while the Hindu voters disapproved CPI(M) overtures towards PDP chief Madhani. The party also failed to get the Christian votes in the states.