CPI Veteran AB Vardhan to be Cremated on Monday


New Delhi: The body of CPI veteran A B Bardhan, who died here last night, will kept at party headquarters here on Monday for his admirers to have a last glimpse before the final rites are conducted in the afternoon, a senior party leader said on Sunday.

92-year old Bardhan passed away yesterday after prolonged illness at the GB Pant Hospital here. CPI national secretary D Raja said the cremation will take place at electric crematorium here at 3 PM tomorrow.

Before that, his body will be kept at the party headquarters, Ajoy Bhawan, where leaders of Left and other political parties can have his last glimpse, Raja added. “Comrade Bardhan was the senior-most and tallest leader of the Left nationally and commanded respect cutting across party lines. We expect party activists and leaders of other parties to turn up here tomorrow.

“His body will be brought to the party headquarters around 10 AM tomorrow so that people can have his last glimpse before we proceed towards electric crematorium at the Nigambodh Ghat at around 1:30 AM,” Raja said. He said Bardhan’s family members including his son Ashok and daughter Alka Barua were already in the city.

The CPI leader said messages from leaders cutting across party lines expressing their grief over Bardhan’s demise have been received by the party. “Union Minister Harsh Vardhan also spoke to me over phone and expressed grief over Comrade Bardhan’s demise,” he said.

The CPI(M), in a message, expressed deep grief over the death of Bardhan saying the Left movement in the country has lost an “invaluable” leader, as it underscored his role in building unity amongst communist and Left parties.

“The Politburo expresses its deep grief at passing away of Bardhan, veteran leader of Communist and working class movement of India. “Comrade Bardhan, as the General Secretary of CPI, helped build Left unity. He played a key role in strengthening relations with CPI(M). Comrade Bardhan’s life and work was that of a dedicated Communist leader.

In his death, the CPI and the Left movement have lost an invaluable leader,” it said in a statement. Bardhan, who steered the party during the turbulent period of coalition politics at national level in 1990s, died last night after prolonged illness. He was hospitalised after he lost consciousness on December 7.

Ardhendu Bhushan Bardhan, a leading figure of the trade union movement and Left politics, had rose to become the General Secretary and then President of All India Trade Union Congress, the oldest trade union in India. He moved to Delhi politics in 1990s and became the Deputy General Secretary of CPI. He succeeded Indrajit Gupta as General Secretary of the party in 1996.