Thiruvananthapuram, Aug 3: CPI (M) General Secretary Prakash Karat has said that breach of party's discipline led to the "unfortunate" expulsion of Lok Sabha Speaker Somnath Chatterjee since he chose to remain in the post defying its directive.
"It is unfortunate. In our party we take pride in maintenance of discipline. We don't have such situations normally in our party. It is unfortunate that it had happened with a person of the stature of Somnath Chatterjee," he told Kairali TV. Karat denied that the action against Chatterjee had created dissensions in the West Bengal unit of the party. "I have made it clear we also respect the post of Speaker and we do not want to do or say anything which will distract that position," he said.
"We are not going into the question of defections or disqualification. For us it is a straight forward matter. The decision to continue as the speaker was his. The decision that he should cease to be a member of the party is that of the party. Once he decided to be there on the Speaker's chair on 21st and 22nd (during confidence vote in the Lok Sabha, we decided to sever our relations," Karat said.
Asked about reports of strong resentment in the West Bengal unit over the way the Chatterjee issue was handled, Karat said he did not get that sort of response when he attended the state committee meet recently.