The central committee of the Communist Party of India-Marxist (CPI-M) on Thursday began a three-day meeting to finalise its stance on economic, foreign and other policy issues ahead of the party congress next year.
The focus of the discussions, aimed at the draft political resolution for the once in three years party congress from March 29-April 2 in Coimbatore, is expected to be the India-US nuclear deal and the fight against US imperialism.
The meeting of the 85-member central committee began with the politburo meet Thursday morning.
Although the meeting is scheduled to finalise the political resolution for the 19th party congress, the members are likely to discuss threadbare the Nandigram violence for which the CPI-M and the party-led government in West Bengal has been severely criticised and the contentious nuclear agreement.
According to sources in the CPI-M, the focus of the political resolution would be the "struggle against imperialism".
"The party has to explain its stance on the nuclear deal to the people. We also have to keep in mind that the general election could take place at any time," said a CPI-M central committee member.
The 19th CPI-M party congress will elect new members to the apex decision-making bodies like the politburo and the central committee.
The CPI-M-led Left Front, which maintains that the nuclear agreement with Washington would make India a junior strategic partner to the US, has recently allowed the government to go ahead with India-specific safeguard negotiations with the International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA), a crucial step to carry forward the deal.
The party has been subjected to relentless criticism over continuing violence in West Bengal's Nandigram area, which has witnessed bloody clashes between CPI-M activists and villagers opposing land acquisition for a special economic zone that was subsequently cancelled.