The presence of Left leaders at an online event organised by the Chinese embassy to mark the centenary of the Communist Party of China has triggered a row with the BJP accusing Left parties of having a long tradition of opposing the national interest and harbouring extraterritorial loyalties.
The Left, however, defended the decision noting that the government itself is engaged with China on several issues and accused the BJP of raising it to divert attention from its government's failures.
The Chinese embassy said that it had organised an online seminar on July 27 to celebrate the centenary of the founding of the Communist Party of China. CPI(M)'s Sitaram Yechury, CPI's D Raja, DMK MP S Senthilkumar and All India Forward Bloc's G Devarajan were among those who attended and addressed it.
BJP MP and its West Bengal unit president Dilip Ghosh hit out at the Left parties for attending the event at a time when India is engaged in a border standoff with China.
He said he had seen communist agitations for decades and noted that they would raise slogans and carry out protests in support of Vietnam when the US had invaded it, and alleged that they also had loyalties towards Russia and China but not India.
"They also have had extraterritorial loyalties. They used to say that China''s chairman is our chairman," Dilip Ghosh told reporters.
Hitting back, D Raja said no one should teach the communists about national interest.
"The communists were in the forefront in fighting the British as well as the Portugese. We made supreme sacrifices for the independence of the country... No one can challenge us. What was the role of the BJP, Jana Sangh or RSS in the fight for India's independence? Now, they are raising this issue to divert attention from their failures in Parliament," he said. D Raja also said the government itself is engaged with China on several issues.
"The government is participating in the Shanghai Cooperation Organisation, BRICS meetings and its economic cooperation with China is ongoing," he said.
Taking a swipe at the Left parties, Dilip Ghosh said people have rejected them for these reasons and noted that they don't have a single Lok Sabha MP or MLA from West Bengal now despite ruling it for decades till 2011.