It has been quite a while that I was looking for time and space to pen down my picture of Jyoti Basu. For a man whose reign as a Chief Minister (of West Bengal) spanned 23 years, and whose legacy is there for eternity, much has been discussed in media following his sad demise.

Each day, while browsing my newspaper, I find a column or two dedicated to this personality, which brings out his lesser known facts and makes me wonder about the sharpness of this man. Someone had rightly said after he declined PM’ship, “this man is not a king, he is a kingmaker.” Even being in power of such a politically volatile state, he was humble and humane till his last breath.

As an aspiring lawyer he was drawn to Marxism very early in his life that proved to be a factor behind his rise in the communist ranks of India. Before Mr. Basu took to bed, he was the most sought after leader in CPI (M) central committee. A veteran in freedom struggle and having seen the early politics of a free India, this man, indeed, was in a perfect situation to take on the mantle of the revolutionary Communist Party of India.

I haven’t been a resident of West Bengal, however, the impact that this man had over the people of India, and those of Bengal, in particular, is very strong. Post his death, I am more drawn to the kind of life he led and the control he had over folks.

Farewell to an era and the icon who will reign at the top with his grit and courage forever.

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