June 16, 2024


Ashok Dhawale

COMRADE Pandit Munde, a former member of the CPI(M) Maharashtra state committee, former secretary of the Aurangabad district committee, and founder-president of the CITU in Aurangabad, passed away at the age of 79 on May 28, 2024.

Born in a poor peasant family in Beed district on June 12, 1945, he completed his graduation in commerce and in 1973 joined as a teacher at the Vasantrao Naik College in Aurangabad. He was active in the teachers’ movement, and from 1980 to 2000, he was elected to the executive of the Dr Babasaheb Ambedkar Marathwada University and College Teachers’ Organisation (BAMUCTO), also serving as its president for some years. This was a period of several successful struggles of teachers. He was elected to the university senate for two terms.

Pandit Munde joined the CPI(M) in 1974; thus, he served the Party for 50 years. Around the same time, he formed the CITU in Aurangabad district, the workers of the Colgate factory being the first to come in the CITU fold. Later Uddhav Bhavalkar was relieved from the SFI, joined CITU, and it was under their joint leadership that the CITU became an important force.

Under the guidance of senior Party leader Gangadhar Appa Burande, who was elected an MP in the historic 1977 Lok Sabha election, the first CPI(M) unit in Aurangabad was started in 1978-79 by Prof Moin Shakir, Prof Yogesh Bhatnagar, Prof J R Shinde, Prof Nagnath Kotapalle, Pandit Munde and Uddhav Bhavalkar. The first four were renowned Left intellectuals teaching in the university. Another Party leader and intellectual Prof Vithal More from Latur district also played a key role in building the Party in the district.

In the 1980s and 1990s, while working in the CITU, Pandit Munde was also active in the DYFI, of which he was a state committee member and district president for some years. The help he rendered to successive generations of the SFI in Aurangabad will always be remembered.

In 2012, Pandit Munde was elected secretary of the CPI(M) Aurangabad district committee, and he continued in that post for six years till 2018. He was elected to the Party state committee, and later was a special invitee to the state committee. He had an important contribution in building the Party, mass fronts, and Left unity in the district. He constantly insisted on probity and transparency in the Party and class and mass fronts. 

Like Vithal More and Uddhav Bhavalkar, another Party leader of my generation from the Marathwada region, Pandit Munde, has passed on. We were very close to each other for over 40 years, and had worked together in the DYFI. Many are the memories of our comradeship.

The CPI(M) Maharashtra state committee dips its red banner in memory of Pandit Munde, and extends deep condolences to his wife Sulabha, and other family members.   



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