(Weekly Organ of the Communist Party of India (Marxist)
November 16, 2008
Toilers Pay Homage To Comrade Prabhat Singh
IN November 2, the CPI(M) organised a condolence meeting in village Nyoli Kalan in Hissar district to pay homage to Comrade Prabhat Singh who had died on October 24. His demise in a road accident has shaken the whole party in the state of Haryana where he was widely known as a militant trade union leader.
Comrade Prabhat Singh was returning to Hissar after visiting his ailing wife admitted in the Agroha Medical College Hospital, when his motor cycle crashed into a tractor trolley. While the trolley was wrongly parked by the roadside, the comrade he could not spot it because of the headlights of the vehicles coming from the other side. Comrade Prabhat died before he could be taken to the hospital while Om Prakash, another party member, was seriously injured in this accident. He has since been discharged from the hospital and is fast recovering.
CPI(M) Central Committee member Dr K Hemalatha, its state secretary Inderjit Singh, AIAWU joint secretary Suneet Chopra, state Kisan Sabha president Phool Singh Sheokand, CITU secretary Kashmiri Lal Thakur, Rajasthan state CITU secretary Hazari Lal Sharma, and leaders of construction workers from several state took part in the condolence meeting. The audience, several thousands strong and carrying party flags, included a large number of peasants and unorganised sector workers.
Inderjit Singh lamented the bitter reality that Comrade Prabhat had left us when his political life was on ascendancy and his talent could be immensely used to organise the unorganised. He was not only a political worker but also a powerful writer whose short stories threw light on several dark corners of our collective life. Virender Malik detailed his life and work, including his role in the anti-dowry agitation launched by the Democratic Youth Federation of India in the entire state. The goons hired by brick kiln owners thrice launched physical attacks against him during 1990-92, and he was implicated in several false cases, but he remained steadfast throughout. He spent over six months in jail and roughly an equal duration underground. When the Gramin Chaukidar Sabha (Rural Watchmen’s Association) was organised in the state, Prabhat Singh was its founder general secretary.
Dr K Hemalatha described Comrade Prabhat Singh as a dedicated comrade with a clear vision, adding that his loss will be felt forever.
To Suneet Chopra, Comrade Prabhat’s personality made one believe that the workers and other toilers were the depositories of the real revolutionary force that alone can change the system.
Sukhbir Singh described Prabhat Singh, his father, as his lost friend as well as mentor.
Dayanand Punia, who is now acting as the CPI(M)’s Hissar district secretary after the demise of Comrade Prabhat Singh, presided over the condolence meeting. He informed the audience about Comrade Prabhat’s decision to donate both his eyes before breathing his last, adding that his sharp and clear vision would always remain our guide.
A LIFE OF DEDICATION
Born on February 1, 1961 in a humble peasant family in village Nyoli Kalan, Prabhat Singh joined the DYFI after his graduation, and soon became very popular among the youth because of his militant attitude on the questions of education, sports facilities, health and employment. He regularly organised sports and social events in many villages, and himself participated in them enthusiastically.
Comrade Prabhat had interest in writing also, and had penned several short stories highlighting the need of social reforms.
He joined the CPI(M) in 1985, soon became its Hissar district secretary and also a vice president of the CITU’s state unit. He was the CITU state president during 2004-07 and later became the first general secretary of the state unit of All India Agricultural Workers Union.
Comrade Prabhat played a leading role in organising the unorganised workers, and rose to become a central committee member of the Construction Workers Federation and its Haryana state president. He was one of the founders of the Red Flag Brick Kiln Workers Union and, during its struggles, faced several times the physical attacks organised by brick kiln owners. His powerful leadership helped the hill workers in Khanak area win some of their demands. He was known all over the state or his clear class vision, uncompromising militancy, reliability and fearlessness.
When Comrade Prabhat’s body was brought to the CPI(M) district committee office in Hissar, a large number of people came there to pay homage to the departed leader. Later, his body was taken to his village where thousands of people joined his funeral procession. State CPI(M) secretary Inderjit Singh, its state secretariat members Surendra ingh, Balbir Singh Dahiya and Jagmati Sangwan, and leaders of all the mass organisations. Nilotpal Basu and Tapan Sen joined the procession from the party centre.
The departed comrade has left behind his wife Bimla, sons Sukhbir and Sumer, a daughter-in-law and aged parents. Sukhbir is a party wholetimer working in the Construction Workers Federation.