Tag Archives: Jyoti Basu

Bose and Basu

“The two great Bengali Heroes of 20th century are surely Bose and Basu, Subhas and Jyoti. Both should have become Prime Ministers. One was stopped by fate, the other prevented by his own party” (in 1996).

This is said by MJ Akbar, a prominent columnist. I have regards and respect to MJ but I beg to differ with him in some points. First of all he is not comparable with Netaji Subhas Chandra Bose, the great freedom fighter. The word “Hero” of 20th Century is also not suitable for Mr. Jyoti Basu. He is not a hero like Netaji Subhas. Netaji fought for freedom for the country whereas Jyoti Basu fought for the rights of the workers and the result we all know. He may be a great leader of Communist movement, he may be a hero to some section of people but not a national hero like Netaji accepted by every Indian. Nobody can deny that he or his policies (too much of rights to workers) are in fact, responsible for  turning West Bengal into a ‘Industrial Graveyard’. His Govt. was responsible for banning English in the the primary classes which “paralysed” a generation. He was a successful leader for developing his party (not the state) and ruling the state continuously for more than 3 decades. He did more goods to his party than the state. Therefore, he may be a hero to his party and his party men but not to everybody. So comparing Jyoti Basu with Netaji, is a insult to him (Netaji). Emotionally charged People comparing him with Netaji Subhas Chandra Bose.

In a democratic system anybody can become a Prime minister. Who knew Devegowda willl be PM oneday? In politics anything can happen. Its a game of politics. That does not mean that any politician is comparable to a National Hero like Netaji. Netaji could have become PM of this country that does not mean any PM or would be PM can be equated with Netaji.


Posted by on 24/01/2010 in India, politics


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An untold story of Jyoti Basu

Welcoming the leader (right) at Dumdum Airport by his wife (centre) and sister in law on his return from Patna on April 01, 1970, next day of the incident.

Hundreds of thousand of links to Jyoti Basu on the websites, there is no reference to a historical incident of his life. It also has no mention in the biographies of the leader. The leader narrowly escaped a bullet in Patna on March 31 1970.

Veteran Marxist leader Jyoti Basu, who passed away on January 17, 2010 (Sunday),  had a brush with death in Patna four decades ago. He had a narrow escape when a bullet fired at him missed its intended target and a CPM sympathiser fell victim.

The incident occurred in the morning of March 31, 1970, at platform no. 1 of Patna Junction. A handful of people had gathered there to receive Basu, who had arrived by Delhi Express. As the supporters were handing him bouquets, a shot was fired and it hit Ali Imam, who had come forward to shake hands with the leader. Imam died on the spot.

“The incident shocked Basu terribly and the bouquets fell off his hands,” recalled CPM activist P K Shukla, who was not present on the platform that day but attended a meeting addressed by Basu later. After the incident, Basu first visited Imam’s residence and then went to the meeting where he spoke about the incident, Shukla recalled.

Source : Times of India

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Posted by on 18/01/2010 in India, politics


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