The Polit Bureau of the Communist Party of India (Marxist) has issued the following statement:
At a time when all the secular and democratic forces should be engaged in the central task of isolating and defeating the BJP-led alliance in the forthcoming elections, the three leaders of the Congress, Messrs. Sharad Pawar, P. A. Sangma and Tariq Anwar made the issue of foreign origin as the main plank of their revolt. They have announced the formation of a new party after their expulsion and continue to focus on the demand that the Prime Minister of the country should not be a citizen of foreign origin. This is an issue raised by the BJP after the Vajpayee government was defeated. The erstwhile leaders of the Congress are only echoing the BJP stand.
The stand taken by the three former Congress leaders does not represent any policy differences with the Congress leadership.
The Polit Bureau of the CPI(M) has already made it clear that every citizen irrespective of origin has equal rights under the Constitution. The BJP's stance on this issue is motivated by chauvinism with a communal tinge. It will be anti-democratic to deprive any citizen of his or her rights under the Constitution.
The CPI(M) will view a party and its leadership not on the basis of the place of birth or personal characteristics of individual leaders, but by the policies they pursue. It is well known that the CPI(M) is opposed to the economic policies adopted by the Congress party.