“I cannot supress my Religous Belief for the sake of Party” – Laments Muslim MP of CPM

published on September 30, 2008

MP reaffirms his faith in God, may leave CPM

Pioneer News Service | Kannur

Rumours are rife in the political circles that CPI(M)’s Member of Parliament from Kannur AP Abdullakkutty, known for his pro-religious sentiments, could soon be out of the party. While one section in the CPI(M) maintain that the party is not seeing his behaviour as something that could invite action, others are of the opinion that his frequent ‘revelations’ about his own personality are causing “image problems” to the party.

At the same time, sources in the Indian Union Muslim League indicate that Abdullakkutty might join that party before the next Lok Sabha election. In that case, he could be the League’s candidate to take on the CPI(M) candidate in Kannur constituency itself, they say.

Abullakkutty has been a thorn in the neck for the official leadership and the strong Kannur lobby of the CPI(M) for quite some time now. The same party, which had used every ounce of its energy to prove the adherence of (late) Mathai Chacko MLA to materialism, had spared Abdullakkutty when he had performed Umrah in Mecca. But when he spoke in public against hartals and bandhs –like Buddhadeb Bhattacharjee did – the CPI(M) reprimanded him.

The young two-time MP of the party had recently added to the Marxist woes recently with his ‘revelation’ that he had visited an astrologer in Thajavur, Tamil Nadu.

Immediately after this confession, he had made a discreet visit to Muslim League national president and Union Minister of State for External Affairs E Ahmed’s residence for a meeting with him that lasted almost an hour. This strengthened rumours to the effect that Abdullakkutty was planning to quit the CPI(M) and join the League.

However, a leading functionary of the CPI(M) and strongman of the party’s Kannur lobby said there was a marked increase in the intensity of Abdullakkutty’s statements about his religious preferences in the recent days. He pointed out that the MP’s articles and interviews in some Malayalam publications were proof of the fact that “he has reached a point where he has to make a decisive step.”

In a recent interview to a Malayalam newspaper, Abdullakkutty said that admission of his being a communist while keeping religious belief would be beneficial to the Marxist party. He said he was convinced that a feeling that even believers could become CPI(M) leaders would help for broadbasing the party. But CPI(M) sources preferred to differ saying the party had “developed to its present position without such advices.”

Abdullakkutty said that he had faced painful dilemmas in several situations torn between belief in God and commitment to the party.

The party bosses had not given him permission for Mayyathu Namaskaram (the particular Muslim rite of paying homage to the dead) when his mother died. “But I had to witness the same leaders performing Myaathu Namaskaram when their dear ones die,” he said in the interview.

“Then and there I understood that it was improper for me to suppress my belief,” he said. Abdullakkutty said that his marriage was as per Muslim religious tradition. His son is being given religious education. Circumcision also was performed on his son, he says.

However, top leaders of the CPI(M) have till now refused to react to the opinions expressed by Abdullakkutty on the need of endorsing religious beliefs. But senior party leaders in Kannur like to term the statements from Abdullakkutty as ruminations of a leader without maturity.

“Those who had so far seen him as a good communist would now be feeling some surprised,” said a leader. However, he refused to give a direct reply on the chances of the young MP getting expelled from the party.

“The Marxist party has seen even worse things. We know how to deal with the problems we face. Abdullakkutty may be causing some irritation but he is not a problem,” was all he would say.

The stand of the top CPI(M) leaders including Pinrayi Vijayan is equivocal. They say that dialectical materialism, the theoretical foundation of the communist party, is against religious belief but the party is not against it.

“This is a perfidious premise and a contradiction in terms. You can interpret it the way you want,” said a Muslim League leader, who refused to rule out the possibility of Adbullakkutty joining his party sometime later.

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