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Mainstream, VOL LVI No 37 New Delhi September 1, 2018

Forward Bloc’s Homage to Somnath Chatterjee

Sunday 2 September 2018

The following is a statement by Debabrata Biswas, General Secretary of the All India Forward Bloc, on the demise of Somnath Chatterjee.

The All India Forward Bloc place on record its deep sorrow and heartfelt condolences on the sad demise of Somnath Chatterjee, the former Speaker of the Lok Sabha and a veteran as well as outstanding parliamentarian.

He was a known face for Left politics in Parliament for years together. The void created due to his absence in Parliament cannot be filled. His death is a great loss not only to the Left and progressive movement of the nation but also to the parliamentary political system of our country. As a good orator and coming from a reputed family background, he always raised his voice in defence of the working class, farmers and marginalised people. His decade-long stint as a parliamentarian made him an encyclopedia on parliamentary procedures and practices. He encouraged the young parliamentarians about how to prepare for debates and the law-making process.

He played an important role in the functioning of the Left Front Government of West Bengal. His contribution as the Chairman of West Bengal Industrial Development Corporation and Shantiniketan Development Authority will be remembered forever.

He was a gentleman and a fighter at the core. He played a vital role in forming the UPA I Government and keeping the BJP away from power after the Lok Sabha elections in 2004. As the Speaker of the Lok Sabha, he never compromised his principles and held high the esteem of the chair. He maintained very cordial relations with many senior leaders of the All India Forward Bloc. The AIFB, while paying rich tributes to the abiding memory of Somnath Chatterjee, expresses its deep condolences to his bereaved family.

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