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Ordinance unconstitutional: CPI(M)

Special Correspondent



CPI(M) general secretary Prakash Karat and other leaders at the party's Central committee meeting in Hyderabad on Saturday.

HYDERABAD: The Communist Party of India (Marxist) has said that the ordinance issued by the Mamata Banerjee-led Trinamool Congress government in West Bengal to reclaim 400 out of 997.11 acres of land at the abandoned small car project site of Tata Motors at Singur was “unconstitutional” as the Assembly was then in session.

A special session of Assembly was convened on May 30 to elect the Speaker, and the House was given a break till June 24. The CPI(M) questioned the constitutional validity of the ordinance given that Governor M.K. Narayanan had not prorogued the Assembly. Under the circumstances, it said, a legislation would be made possible only by putting up a Bill that would later become an Act.

Articulating the CPI(M)'s stance, State committee secretary Biman Bose criticised the government for promulgating the ordinance in disregard of its constitutional implications. “We are against the ordinance.”

The Land Development ordinance was issued so that a portion of the land at the project site might be reclaimed and returned to farmers who had refused to accept compensation from the government.

Meanwhile, a two-day meeting of the Central committee of the CPI(M) got under way here under the presidentship of Centre of Indian Trade Unions (CITU) leader M.K. Pandhe.

Parliamentary party leader Sitaram Yechury told reporters that the current political situation in the country, corruption in UPA-II and preparations for Lokpal Bill were discussed in the meeting. He said the decision on the next congress of the party, which became due last year, would be taken on Sunday.

Asked whether the meeting discussed the issue of leadership change, Mr. Yechury said: “I have been saying from the beginning that there will be no such thing.”

Party State secretary and Polit Bureau member B.V. Raghavulu said the meeting discussed reports of State committees on the recent elections in five States. The Central committee was of the view that the UPA did not enjoy the mandate of the people, as was evident from the results in Tamil Nadu and Kerala, where corruption had led people to vote against the previous regimes.

According to the report on West Bengal, the party could regain strength in the State though it suffered a setback. While the vote share had improved in the rural areas, it had eroded slightly in urban pockets. The Kerala committee reported that the delimitation which led to an increase in the number of constituencies where the party was weaks resulted in a net loss of four seats, Mr. Raghavulu said.

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