But it’s not just that. In the last few days, the Left has also systematically and inexplicably squandered whatever little doubt people may have had about the possibility that the Communists were a scrupulous and ideologically conscientious bunch. The Left parties, especially the CPIM, have showed themselves up for the first time to be regular politicians like everyone else. All notions of them being obstinately ideological are now permanently gone. Abandoned like dogs by the Samajwadi Party, comrade Karat canoodled with Mayawati, in an instant subverting the CPIM’s draconian fear of melding minority politics into its organisational fold. That old fool Bardhan went so far as to call Mayawati the country’s next Prime Minister. The Left even found it fit to collude with the BJP! Of all things, this was surely the end of any doubts anyone had about the Left’s so-called moral rectitude and integrity.
The expulsion of Lok Sabha speaker Somnath Chatterjee yesterday was the last straw. The lead editorial in today’s Express put it perfectly: “Until they [the Left] learn that institutions are valuable in and of themselves, and not as way-stations; that we do not live in a world in which dissenters can be airbrushed out of photographs; and that decisions made in bitterness and anger will usually be blunders, they will never occupy the social democratic space at the centre which they so clearly feel is theirs by right.“
The era of the Left is hopefully now over. Hopefully a campaign will be mounted to clean the vestiges of their poisonous influence from the innards of our polity, our economy and the thought process of our security system. Hopefully now, a whole host of defence deals and agreements left in the lurch as a result of surly and presumptuous letters by Sitaram Yechury, can now reach their logical conclusion. That, and the rest of the country.