Party leaders, social organisations offer condolences

Speaker G. Karthikeyan, Chief Minister Oommen Chandy, Communist Party of India (Marxist) State unit secretary Pinarayi Vijayan, Kerala Pradesh Congress Committee (KPCC) president Ramesh Chennithala, and several others were among those who expressed their grief at the demise of veteran Communist Party of India (CPI) leader Veliyam Bhargavan here on Wednesday.

Mr. Karthikeyan, who termed Bhargavan a communist to the core, said the departed leader had always stood away from the seats of power, meticulously following his ideals. A leader who stood with people throughout his life, Bhargavan also played a crucial role in nurturing and sustaining the guiding principles of coalition politics in the State.

Mr. Chandy, calling Bhargavan the ‘karma yogi’ of Kerala politics, took note of the fact that Bhargavan, despite winning on both occasions that he contested an election, had kept aloof from power politics though opportunities were never in short supply. His only priority was the welfare of the working class and the people, the Chief Minister said, adding that he cherished the days when he could work closely with Bhargavan from 1970 to 1982 when the CPI and the Congress had moved together as allies.

Leader of the Opposition V.S. Achuthanandan the communist and Left forces in the country in general, and in the State in particular, had lost a strong leader. Pointing out that Mr. Bhargavan’s personality was studded with various facets, including those of a freedom fighter, an out and out communist leader, a capable legislator, and an outstanding orator, Mr. Achuthanandan said that Bhargavan was one of those very rare communist leaders who were well-versed in the Puranas and the Upanishads as they were in the Marxist-Leninist ideology. His contributions in building the communist party and the LDF were invaluable, he added.

CPI (M) unit State secretary Pinarayi Vijayan said Bhargavan was an unparalleled communist leader who played a major role in guiding the Kerala society towards the path of development. Progressive organisations, and later, the communist movement, had paved the way for an evolved society in the State. Bhargavan was foremost among the leaders who strove to sustain this momentum of social evolution.

The contributions of Bhargavan in strengthening the Left Democratic Front (LDF) during the years that he was the State secretary of the CPI were incomparable, Mr. Vijayan said, adding that the leader was one who realised that non-parliamentary politics was as crucial to the fulfilment of the communist aim of poverty alleviation as parliamentary politics. His demise would be a great loss to the movement in the country, he added.

CPI(M) Polit Bureau member M.A. Baby; DYFI State unit president T.V. Rajesh and secretary M. Swaraj; Congress(S) president and former minister Kadannappally Ramachandran; Revolutionary Socialist Party general secretary T.J. Chandrachoodan; RSP State secretary A.A. Azeez; Ministers P.J. Joseph, Thiruvanchoor Radhakrishnan, Aryadan Mohammad, K.C. Joseph, P.K. Abdu Rabb, A.P. Anil Kumar, M.K. Muneer, P.K. Kunhalikutty, K.M. Mani, and Shibu Baby John; former minister N.K. Premachandran; K. Muraleedharan, MLA; LDF Thiruvananthapuram district convener V. Gangadharan Nadar; Santhigiri Ashram organising secretary Swami Gururatnam Jnana Tapaswi; organisations including the SFI State committee, the Nationalist Congress Party, the Kerala Gazetted Officers’ Federation, the Purogamana Kala Sahithya Sangham, and the Prof. Joseph Mundassery Foundation, various trade unions, and associations too were among those who expressed their grief and offered condolences. CPI general Secretary Suravaram Sudhakar Reddy said Bhargavan was one of the most popular leaders of the party. undivided communist party.