New Delhi : Stunned by the public spat between its two top leaders in Kerala, the Communist Party of India-Marxist (CPI-M) will discuss ways to end the ugly squabbles in the state that have hit its year-old government.
According to CPI-M sources, the party leadership, which has been struggling to resolve the unrelenting feud between Chief Minister V.S. Achuthanandan and party state secretary Pinarayi Vijayan, was "shocked" at Wednesday's outbursts against each other.
While Achuthanandan openly attacked Vijayan at a news conference in the secretariat building, the latter warned the chief minister to "maintain party discipline".
"The leadership feels the internal fight has gone beyond the state unit's control. The central leaders have several times directed the state leaders to restrict themselves. What happened yesterday (Wednesday) has crossed all the limits," a senior CPI-M leader told IANS on condition of anonymity.
The CPI-M politburo, which is meeting here Friday and Saturday to discuss the presidential election and the upcoming party Congress, is expected to dedicate a "good amount of time" over the Kerala affairs.
"Our leaders, including (general secretary) Prakash Karat, have been visiting the state frequently and discussing the differences between the chief minister and Vijayan. Many warnings have been given," said the disappointed leader.
The infighting between so-called hardliners led by Achuthanandan and the so-called reformists of Vijayan intensified after the chief minister took the lead to raze illegal constructions in the tourist hub of Munnar.
As Vijayan's group charged the chief minister with cornering personal credit for the eviction drive, Achuthanandan Wednesday hit back accusing his rivals of leaking information about party and coalition meetings to the media.
Although Achuthanandan did not refer to the party secretary by name, it was Vijayan who had alleged that a "media syndicate" was active in Kerala to weaken the CPI-M.
Reacting to the chief minister, Vijayan hit out – also without taking Achuthanandan's name – at a "responsible politburo member" for the mess in the party.
The Kerala unit is the most powerful in the CPI-M after the West Bengal chapter.