Somnath Chatterjee said the party's top cadres had become obsessed with their own importance and lost touch with their grassroots supporters.
"The party should seriously consider change in leadership as mere narcissistic leadership will not help," Chatterjee added.
Key losers of UPA
The CPI(M) swept to power in West Bengal in 1977 and has governed the eastern state ever since, reveling in the title of the world's longest-serving elected Marxist regime. Until last year, the communists had backed the Congress-led coalition government but then withdrew their support to protest against a civilian nuclear deal with the United States.
Image: CPI(M) leader Sitaram Yechury at party office in New Delhi on Saturday, May 16, 2009.