CPI-M plays down party MP’s comments on religion

October 10th, 2008 - 7:41 pm ICT by IANS  

Kannur (Kerala), Oct 10 (IANS) The Communist Party of India-Marxist (CPI-M) in Kerala Friday said it was not “anti-religious” after parliament member A.P. Abdullakutty created a stir with his latest comments on the party’s stand on religious beliefs. After Abdullakutty’s pilgrimage to Mecca and his visit to a Nadi astrologer in Tamil Nadu caused much embarrassment to the CPI-M earlier, his statements on the party’s take on religion have put communist leaders in a tight spot yet again.

In an interview to a Malayalam newspaper, Abdullakutty said the CPI-M needed more clarity regarding its stand on religious beliefs. He added the party should openly accept anti-exploitative and progressive views in religions.

Though he had sought a clarification on the observance of religious practices by followers of the party, he hadn’t got any response.

In a bid to play down Abdullakutty’s comments, party state committee member P. Sasi Friday said the CPI-M did not consider it a sin if the MP from Kannur believed in religion.

“It is a personal issue. There is a false notion that those in CPI-M should not hold any religious faith. The CPI-M is not an anti-religious party. If Abdullakutty has got any doubts, the party is ready to clarify it,” said Sasi, who is also Kannur district secretary.

Abdullakutty’s pilgrimage to Mecca had created much controversy in the party and his visit to Vaitheeswaran Koil in Tamil Nadu where he met Nadi astrologer also raised quite a few eyebrows.

There were also media reports hinting that Abdullakutty planned to leave CPI-M and that the party also had decided not to field him from the Kannur Lok Sabha constituency again.

The two-time MP and a former Students Federation of India (SFI) state president, Abdullakkutty has not gone up the party hierarchy and is still an area committee member.

Reports say that the CPI-M is hesitant to act against the MP for the fear of losing Muslim votes.

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