Thiruvananthapuram: The century-old Communist Party of India (Marxist) [CPM] is in the throes of a significant introspection and changes to make it responsive to the new-age challenges. In a significant move, all the committees of the Left party are set to don a new look in the near future as the upper-age limit of members has been brought down to 75 years from the current cap of 80. The decisions would be implemented fully only from the next Party Congress in 2021.
With this proposal, the apex party bodies like the Politburo and Central Committee are set for a makeover. (The Politburo is at the apex of the CPM's organisational heirarchy. Its members are elected by the Central Committee.)
Several key members of the state committee, including those in the powerful Kerala unit, too would be ousted with the new age limit becoming effective. In the Kerala state committee, several leaders, including Koliakode N. Krishnan Nair and Anathalavattom Anandan, have crossed 75 already.
According to the latest proposals, 75 is the age limit set by the Central Committee for its own members as well as those of the Politburo. The age ceiling for the state committee members is lower than that.
The Kerala unit of the CPM has even proposed the age limit of those newly inducted into the state committee be 65.
Though the Central Committee has mooted lowering of the age cap, deliberations on who would be shown the door, which all members would be barred from moving into higher units of the party, and the new faces that would be inducted are on.
The feeder units have also started acting on the instruction to increase the women's participation at all levels. Women constitute about 25 per cent of the new CITU committees and office-bearers.
This would come into effect in the new CITU state meet to be held this month.
Fate of Pinarayi?
If the age ceiling of 75 is strictly followed, Kerala Chief Minister Pinarayi Vijayan cannot be included in the next Politburo and Central Committee. When the next party Congress is held in 2021, Pinarayi would be 77 years old.
The names of S Ramachandran Pillai, P Karunakaran, and Vaikom Vishwan too may have to vacate their seats from the Central Committee. Though S Ramachandran Pillai had crossed 80, he was given a leeway and allowed to continue in the Politburo.