People's Democracy

(Weekly Organ of the Communist Party of India (Marxist)

Vol. XXX

No. 16

April 16, 2006

Comrade Mahabub Zahedi (1929 Ė 2006)


MAHABUB Zahedi, member of the state committee of the Bengal unit of the CPI (M) passed away in New Delhi on the morning of 8 April.  He was 77.  Comrade Zahedi who was an MP and an all-India vice-president of the AIKS has been keeping indifferent health for some time in the recent past.  The Party flag flew at half-mast throughout Bengal on 9 April.


CPI (M) general secretary, Prakash Karat, Bengal state secretary of the CPI (M), Biman Basu, and Polit Bureau member of the CPI (M), Jyoti Basu have expressed their grief at the passing away of Comrade Zahedi who was a veteran leader of the kisan movement in the country.


Among those who paid their last respects to Comrade Mahabub Zahedi in Delhi were Sunit Chopra, Basudeb Acharya, Pushpinder Singh Grewal, and Subhas Roy of the CPI (M), and Abani Roy of RSP.


Among others, Biman Basu, veteran CPI (M) leader Samar Mukherjee, Lok Sabha speaker Somnath Chatterjee, and CPI (M) leaders Nilotpal Basu, Madan Ghosh, Amal Haldar, Subodh Roy, Raghunath Kushari, and Swadesh Chakraborty placed wreathed on the last remains of the departed kisan leader at the Muzaffar Ahmad Bhavan.


Following the placement of flowers, garlands, and wreaths on the last remains of Comrade Zahedi at the Muzaffar Ahmad Bhavan, Comrade Zahediís body was taken away to his native Burdwan where the departed Comrade lay in state at the Burdwan district CPI (M) headquarters.  Innumerable Party workers, as well as supporters and sympathisers of the Party paid their last respects to Comrade Zahedi.


Speaking on Comrade Zahedi, Prakash Karat said that the CPI (M) lost a skilled organiser, a capable parliamentarian, and leading kisan organiser.  An orator well versed in Hindi and Urdu, and a leader known for his genteel behaviour, Comrade Zahedi was engaged in the task of building up the kisan struggles in the Hindi belt.


A Party whole timer from the day he won his Communist Party membership back in 1953, Comrade Mahabub Zahedi was a member of the secretariat of the Burdwan district unit of the CPI (M) in 1966, and a member of the Bengal state committee of the CPI (M) in 1981.  Between1978 and 1991, he was the Sabhadhipati of the Burdwan Zillah Parishad.


A cabinet minister in the Bengal Left Front government between 1991 and 1996, Comrade Zahedi steered the Animal Resources Development department to fresh heights especially in terms of making the domesticated animal a principal source of income for the urban and rural poor.


A three times winner from the Katwa Parliamentary constituency in 1996, 1998, and 1999, Comrade Zahedi was known for his intimate depth of knowledge of rural India, and of the kisan movement of which he was a product.  A Communist of simple habits, Comrade Mahabub Zahedi possessed a great sense of humour and his cutting repartees on the floor of the Bengal Assembly very often saw the aggressive Opposition rendered lustreless in their embarrassment.


Comrade leaves behind his two sons.  His wife, Hameeda, had pre-deceased him.


Comrade Mahabub Zahediís last remains were given their final resting place at Kasimpur in Burdwan in the early afternoon of 9 April. (B P)