CPI(M) members free to practise religion: Kodiyeri

Kozhikode district conference of party begins

Categorically stating that his party did not frown upon believers, Communist Party of India (Marxist) State secretary Kodiyeri Balakrishnan has said that the party members are free to practise their religion and visit places of worship.

Inaugurating the three-day district conference of the CPI(M) here on Monday, Mr. Balakrishnan said that members could be non-believers as well. “The CPI(M) is a party that provides membership to believers. The constitution of the CPI(M) did not anywhere say it disapproved of believers,” he said. Without naming the Samastha Kerala Sunni Yuvajana Sangham leader Abdussamad Pookkottur who stated that no Muslim can be a communist, Mr. Balakrishnan said that a deliberate attempt was made to wean away the Muslim community which was now attracted to the CPI(M). This attitude was similar to the ideology of the Jamaat-e-Islami, he said.

He said the Indian Union Muslim League (IUML) was trying to launch a second liberation struggle to hide its embarrassment over Samastha Kerala Jamiyathul Ulema abandoning the party on the Waqf Board appointments. That party was bringing together several Muslim organisations to foment a communal divide in the State. “But they are mistaken as the situation now is different,” he said, adding that the IUML had better rescind the move.

The Polit Bureau member said that Sunni leaders, including Sayed Muhammad Jifri Muthukkoya Thangal and Kanthapuram A.P. Aboobacker Musliyar, had opposed the stance of the IUML against the State government’s decision to entrust Wakf board appointments to PSC. The IUML had kept mum when an ordinance was promulgated during the previous government and then did not make it an issue even during the Assembly polls, Mr. Balakrishnan said.

He said the IUML, which was a non-religious political party, had a significant influence among the Muslim community. However, that party was taking a stance aligning with political Islamists that would defeat the purpose of tackling the challenge posed by the BJP. “That party was blindly propagating anti-Marxism. It is now driven by the ideology of Jamaat-e- Islami,” he said.

He accused the Congress-led United Democratic Front for forging an alliance with Jamaat-e- Islami, SDPI and extremist forces to defeat the Left parties. This would only embolden the RSS in the State, he added.

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