Yechury at the CPM helm again

Sitaram Yechury
Sitaram Yechury

Kannur: The 85-member new Central Committee that was elected at the 23rd Party Congress has chosen Sitaram Yechury as the CPM general secretary.

Yechury is taking over the reins of the party for the third consecutive term.

The 69-year-old has been at the helm of the largest left party in India since the 21st Party Congress in Visakhapatnam in April 2015.

He succeeded Prakash Karat who had held the top post in the party for three consecutive terms, from 2005 to 2015.

Yechury was re-elected as General Secretary at the 22nd Party Congress held at Hyderabad in 18 April 2018.

As per the CPM constitution, there is no bar for Yechury to become the General Secretary for the third time.

The anti-Yechury forces had unsuccessfully tried to bring politburo member S Ramachandran Pillai and Tripura former Chief Minister Manik Sarkar to the post in 2015 and 2018, respectively.

Yechury's detractors in the party are opposed to his pro-Congress political line which was rejected by the Party Congress.

His pitch for close association with Congress was used as a rallying point by the Prakash Karat-Pinarayi Vijayan camp in the party in order to block his ascend to the party General Secretary's post in 2015 and his re-election to the same post in 2018. But it did not succeed as both the times, Yechury got the mandate to become the General Secretary. 

The 85-member new Central Committee has 15 women and 17 new faces of which four (P Rajeev, K N Balagopal, P Sathidevi and C S Sujatha) are from Kerala.

The 17-member politburo has three new entrants, including LDF convenor A Vijayaraghavan. The other two PB inductees, Ramachandran Dom from West Bengal and Ashok Dhawle from Maharashtra are doctors. This takes the total number of MBBS doctors in the PB to three. West Bengal state secretary Surjya Kanta Mishra, who is already a PB member, is also a doctor.

After acquiring an MBBS degree, Dr Dhawle had practiced medicine from 1976 to 1983 before quitting medicine to pursue politics academically. He is also a post graduate in political science. Dr Dom, a dalit, had acquired his MBBS degree from the NRS (Nil Ratan Sircar) Medical College in Kolkata.

Though a Bengal native, Surjya Kanta Mishra qualified as a doctor from Srirama Chandra Bhanja Medical College and Hospital, Cuttack in Odisha and then acquired a Diploma in Tuberculosis and Chest Diseases.

The 23rd CPM Party Congress is set to conclude here on Sunday evening.

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