CPM censures Achuthanandan for anti-K'kulam stance

Party for commissioning two reactors at nuclear plant

The CPM has censured its senior leader V S Achuthanandan for his support to the anti-Kudankulam agitation.

The party has reiterated its support to the project with the condition that it should pass the safety audit and address the concerns of the people.

“V S Achuthanandan has taken a position contrary to this stand. He has also criticised the party’s position as explained by the general secretary. The central committee rejects his views. It censures him for his refusal to abide by the stand worked out at the party congress. The central committee directs V S Achuthanandan to adopt the stand taken by the party,” says a central committee resolution after its three-day meeting in the national capital. 

“Yes, Achuthanandan has taken a different position but there is no question of reviewing the party decision on this issue which was taken at our party congress. We want an independent safety audit to be undertaken before the plant is allowed to function at Kudankulam,” CPM general secretary Prakash Karat said on Sunday. Achuthanandan was present at the meeting.

“In the case of Kudankulam, the resolution has made an exception as the agreement for these reactors were signed two decades before the Indo-US nuclear deal, at a time when the US and other western countries had imposed sanctions on India,” said the CPM. The last party congress held in Kozhikode barely a year ago decided that the agitation need not be supported. The Left is divided over the issue as the CPI is supporting the protest.

The Kudankulam issue has turned into a ticking bomb for the CPM in Kerala with Achuthanandan using it to take up his intra-party fight with the central leadership targeting party general secretary Prakash Karat who backs his rival group in Kerala led by secretary Pinarayi Vijayan.

As a tactic, he has expressed solidarity with the agitation deviating from the party line. He also made an abortive attempt on September 18 to meet the agitators. Despite him being publicly censured, party watchers in Kerala say Achuthanandan has succeeded in his operation.

Party sources said that Achuthanandan circulated a note in the central committee reasoning out his stand against Kudankulam in detail, citing various incidents. With this he was successful in dividing the committee. However, they felt the timing was not appropriate.

Extra liabilities will push up cost: Russia

Ahead of a key bilateral meeting, Russia on Sunday said the cost of the third and fourth unit of the Kudankulam plant would escalate if it is brought under the purview of India’s civil nuclear liability law over which differences remained.

Russia also said the row over its telecom firm Sistema after the cancellation of 2G licenses will have a “great repercussion” not only for bilateral cooperation but also for investments in India and hoped that a solution can be reached soon.

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