December 04, 2022

Comrade Manab Mukherjee

COMRADE Manab Mukherjee, a former member of the secretariat of the West Bengal state committee of the CPI(M), a former minister of the Left Front government, and a former pioneer leader of the state student-youth movement passed away on November 29, 2022. He was 67 years old. For the last few months, he was hospitalised after suffering a major brain hemorrhage. After treatment at the hospital, he returned home a few days ago but still remained under treatment. On November 29, while at his home, a sudden cardiac arrest happened, and on the way to the hospital, he collapsed. He is survived by his wife Ishita Mukherjee and daughter Hiya Mukherjee. Left Front chairman, Biman Basu, Party Polit Bureau Member Surya Mishra, Hannan Mollah, Party state secretary, Mohammad Salim, and many others expressed deep grief over his death.

Manab Mukherjee (born on August 24, 1955) was born and brought up in Kolkata.  He attended Jodhpur Park Boys School and later chose physics for graduation from St. Xaviers College. He did his MBA from Calcutta University. Mukherjee engaged himself in the realm of Left-political politics from his student days. He became the president of the SFI Kolkata district committee in 1984, and later a CEC member of SFI. In 1986 he joined DYFI and became the district president of Kolkata the next year. He was also the editor of ‘Yuvashakti’- the organ of DYFI (West Bengal). He became the state secretary of DYFI in 1991. Comrade Manab Mukherjee became the district committee member of CPI (M) Kolkata in the year 1986, a state committee member in 1998, and was state secretariat member in 2018. Later he was relieved from the secretariat due to his poor health. 

An outstanding speaker and a prolific and brilliantly analytical writer, Mukherjee’s articles drew instant admiration from all spheres of public life and were regularly published in almost every organ of the state Party. Manab Mukherjee had an exceptional flair for political debates and was an outstanding participant in parliamentary politics. He was an MLA from 1987 (Beleghata, Kolkata) when he was only 22 and later became minister of the Left Front government in West Bengal. His ministerial term spanned from 1996 to 2011 where he showed his excellent acumen by being in charge of several departments. 

Manab Mukherjee shall be known for his power of the pen.    Readers already acquainted with his earlier work still fondly remember the series of articles he wrote as the representative of the World Federation of Democratic Youth in 1994 when he visited South Africa which was holding its first election after the end of apartheid which later came out as a book.   He also wrote two novels that are popular among all who like to read Bengali contemporary literature. 

When Comrade Manab Mukherjee was leading the youth movement, there were serious challenges in the hills to deal with separatists and to counter the discrimination of the central government to protect the interests of future generations through industrialisation in the state. Manab Mukherjee played one of the leading roles in mobilising the student-youth community of Bengal for Haldia Petrochemicals, Bakreshwar Thermal Power Station, etc. Manav Mukherjee spoke and wrote relentlessly on the dangers of communalism and imperialism and on various international issues. Comrade Manab Mukherjee's name will remain as one of those who led the youth of Bengal to be left-minded even after the collapse of socialism in the Soviet Union and Eastern Europe.

Comrade Manab Mukherjee has donated both his cornea and the body to the Medical College, Kolkata.