Former CPI-M MP accuses party of being undemocratic

Kolkata, Feb 23: Facing charges of corruption and anti-party activities, former Communist Party of India-Marxist MP Lakshman Seth Sunday said “autocracy and individualism are replacing democracy” in the party.

Seth, a party strongman of East Midnapore district, also described his dropping from the state committee as “undemocratic”.

“Our legal system recognises that a person cannot be punished without being tried. But I was dropped by the party despite being implicated in a false case. It is reflective of a bourgeoisie system. It is undemocratic, I have been punished without any fault and without being heard,” Seth told media persons here.

“The central and the state committee had decided that those members, who have been implicated in false cases and are underground, will not be stripped of their posts in the party. But in my case it was not followed. Removing me was a totally undemocratic step,” he said.

Seth contended that the “individualism and autocracy” in the party will lead to its downfall.

“If there is no democracy in the party, rather individualism, autocracy and bureaucracy seep in, then it’s downfall is inevitable. Be it the Soviet Union or Shakespeare’s King Lear, it was autocracy which brought their downfall,” he said.

Seth, who wielded immense clout in the district during the last decade of Left Front’s 34-year rule, is now out on bail after spending 118 days in police and jail custody for allegedly plotting violent incidents in Nandigram of East Midnapore district in 2007.

After having written to the party expressing his desire to quit, Seth Sunday was present at the launch ceremony of pro-Dalit outfit by now rebel party legislator Abdur Rezzak Mollah.

The former Tamluk MP also extended his support to Mollah’s new outfit which will be contesting the 2016 West Bengal Assembly polls.

“Only future will tell whether I will be staying in the party. There is a need to create awareness for social justice and welfare and for that if I have to quit the party, then I am ready,” added Seth.

He also denied having any knowledge about the recent heckling of a two-member committee set up to probe graft charges against him.

Seth is under the scanner following the sale of a medical and a dental college in Haldia of the district to a private business group for a whopping amount.

IANS