"All that is nonsense. I never discuss inner-party issues outside," said Yechury when asked about reports that he had offered to resign from the top-most decision-making body of the CPI (M) at a meeting last Sunday.

The CPI(M)'s strength sharply fell to nine members in the Lower House in the recent elections, including only two from its bastion in West Bengal, from a total of 16 in the 15th Lok Sabha and 44 in the previous one.

The reports came days after former CPI (M) stalwart Somnath Chatterjee pitched for an immediate change in the party's leadership, accusing it of losing contact with the masses. The former Lok Sabha speaker was expelled from the CPI (M) in 2008.

Pointing out that a new leadership was needed urgently, he said, "In the party there is a good pool of talented young men and women leaders who can take over the reins to steer the party."

The reports said Yechury's offer to quit was rejected by the party leadership, including general secretary Prakash Karat who has been speaking of ‘collective responsibility’.

Yechury, a member of Rajya Sabha, is the leader of the CPI (M)'s parliamentary group. He is also a long-time chairman of the Parliamentary Standing Committee on Transport, Tourism and Culture.

The CPI(M) Politburo, which had held preliminary discussions on the election results on May 11, would meet again on June 6.

This meeting would be followed by that of the Central Committee on June 7 and 8 to hold in-depth discussion on the problems facing the party and its organisation, especially in West Bengal, apart from analysing its electoral performance.


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