Biman rhetoric fails to convince allies
KOLKATA, March 25: Even as the CPI-M leadership, including its state secretary, Mr Biman Bose, steps up its anti-judiciary rhetoric on the Nandigram massacre probe, its partners in the Left Front are not convinced by the “desperate” exercise.
LF leaders today said their parties are yet to formulate their stand on the CPI-M’s “assessment” on the so-called judicial activism in ordering a CBI probe into the mayhem at Nandigram on 14 March.
But they believed it was wrong to expect the court to sit tight when redressal was sought on the specious plea that a Supreme Court Bench was still considering the scope of the court in adjudicating such cases as was being argued by Mr Bose and the Speaker.
Finding the chief minister’s public rating plummeting to sub-zero levels over the Nandigram firing, the CPI-M leadership mounted a huge damage-control exercise.
It first fielded its cat’s paw, transport minister, Mr Subhas Chakraborty, to question the Governor, Mr Gopal Krishna Gandhi’s “right” to publicly express his anguish over the massacre. There wasn’t any response from Raj Bhavan to the contemptuous attempt as the Governor must have found it beneath his dignity to engage in a war of words with a minister known for the flip-flop nature of his decisions. But the CPI-M leadership found in a raucous debate on the powers of the Governor a handy ploy to divert public attention from the main issue.
It was then the Speaker’s turn to put his weight behind the government stand. He used not his chair, but his chamber within the august Assembly precincts for his fulmination against the Governor and the High Court. This time the Governor responded with his characteristic sobriety by offering a bouquet to the Speaker along with a pithy defence.
The Speaker immediately went on the defensive and clarified he had high regard for the Governor, whom he described as “an excellent man and scholar”, but at the same time felt “with all humility” the Governor’s statement had let itself be dragged into litigation. The CPI-M state secretary then used his party meeting to continue the tirade against judicial activism.
A LF leader said at this stage he felt neither the Governor nor the High Court need any prompting from any quarters about their respective jurisdictions.