New Delhi, July 17 : CPI (M) general secretary Prakash Karat, who is touring the country extensively to garner support against the Congress-led UPA Government, is not going to West Bengal following anger brewing among the party's Muslim legislators.
A large section of party's Muslim MLAs in West Bengal are strongly opposed to Karat's move to vote on the same side as the BJP during the confidence motion in Loki Sabha and are critical of party's move to "travel" with the communal forces.
Sheikh Mujibar Rahman, a CPI (M) MLA from Midnapore, has gone on record saying: "I do not know how we will tackle this when elections come. There is no denying that a section of Muslim voters have moved away from us."
The Asian Age reported that a large chunk of CPI (M) Muslim legislators share Rahman's sentiments.
A major showdown is expected between moderates and hardliners during the Central Committee meeting of the CPI (M) in New Delhi on July 19 on the contentious issues of voting with the BJP.
CPI (M) Central Committee member Hannan Mollah made it clear that at both the 18th and 19th party congresses of the CPI (M), the "BJP has been branded as enemy number one."
He added: "We have never changed our position. Nor do we intend to."
"It's like the CPI (M) and BJP are travelling in the same train. Don't expect the CPI (M) to jump out of the train because the BJP is a co-passenger," he said.