Staff Reporter

VIJAYAWADA: Activists of the Left parties and people from various walks of life on Monday paid rich tributes to veteran CPI leader Dasari Nagabhushana Rao, who breathed his last in Hyderabad on Sunday.

His body was kept at Palme Dutt Bhavan, the CPI headquarters here, for about an hour and taken to Visalandhra Vignana Samithi, where it was kept for some time.

The body was later taken to Digavalli village in Nuzvid mandal, where he was born, for keeping it through the night and cremate it on Tuesday.

The Left leaders recalled their association with 83-year old Nagabhushana Rao, particularly his contribution to the strengthening of the Left movement in the State. He entered into the Communist movement in 1940s while as a student. Nagabhushana Rao led an agitation against detention system that was in practice during 1947-48 in collegiate education.

Consequently, the Government of the day debarred him from pursuing higher education in any of the colleges in Madras State, recalled Vasireddi Satyanarayana, a senior journalist who was closely associated with Ngabhushana Rao. The students’ organisations vehemently opposed the ban on him, and made a made a representation to C. Rajagopalachari, the then Chief Minister of composite Madras State, urging him to allow Nagabhushana Rao to pursue graduation. Rajagopalachari responded positively and allowed him to continue his education, Mr. Satyanarayana said. Recollecting that he was in high school when the CPI leader was debarred, Mr. Satyanarayana said Nagabhushana Rao had become his classmate in degree college after the ban was lifted.

Widely travelled

The Left leaders recollected that Nagabhushana Rao played a key role in the development of Visalandhra Vignana Samithi and the Chandra Rajeswara Rao Foundation in Hyderabad. He visited the erstwhile Soviet Union, Mongolia, China, Finland and other countries, and served as Rajya Sabha member. Nagabhushana Rao’s wife Lakshmi, CPI State secretary K. Narayana, CPI floor leader in the Assembly Chada Venkat Reddy, MLA Sk. Nasar Vali, MLC Jalli Wilson, Kolli Nageswara Rao of Rythu Sangham, Puli Sambasiva Rao of Praja Natya Mandali, senior journalist K. Srinivas Reddy, CPI (M) leader and former MP Y. Radhakrishna Murthy, Rythu Sangham leader A. Nageswara Rao, CPI (M) leader Ch. Babu Rao, CPI floor leader in the VMC P. Gowtham Reddy, former Mayors L. Govindarajulu and Tadi Sakuntala were among those who paid tributes to him.