The Polit Bureau of the Communist Party of India (Marxist) has issued the following statement:
The Polit Bureau of the CPI(M) expresses its deep sorrow at the death of Comrade Samar Mukherjee, a most exceptional, outstanding and dedicated leader of the communist movement in India. A valiant freedom fighter, able parliamentarian and leader of the trade union movement, Samarda passed away at the age of 100 in Kolkata today. He was the oldest living member of the CPI(M), having joined the Party in 1940. He dedicated his entire life as a communist to the cause of the working class and to the exploited people of India. He was a member of the Central Committee of the Party from 1966 and was elected to the Polit Bureau in 1978 and continued in that capacity till he was elected as the Chairman of the Party’s Central Control Commission at the 14th Congress of the Party in 1992. At the time of his death he was a Special Invitee to the Central Committee.
Samar Mukherjee began his political activities as a young student and joined the freedom struggle. He was deeply inspired by Marxist ideology and the work of the Party. Immediately after he got his membership in 1940, he became a fulltime worker of the Party. He was one of the founders of the communist movement in Howrah district. In 1942 he became the organizing secretary of Howrah district of the undivided Communist Party. He became a member of the West Bengal State Council of the party in 1953. It was under his leadership that the movement for the rights of refugees from the erstwhile East Bengal was built up in Bengal which played a significant role in expanding the influence of the communist party.
Com. Samar Mukherjee played an outstanding role as a leading communist parliamentarian. In 1957 he was elected as an MLA from the North Howrah constituency. He was elected to the Lok Sabha from Howrah constituency for three consecutive terms from 1971 onwards. He also elected to the Rajya Sabha for two terms. As the leader of the CPI(M) group in Parliament he most effectively put across the Party”s line on all major issues, raising the voice of the working people and their struggles. He won the admiration of leaders cutting across party lines because of his unambiguous commitment to the cause of the exploited masses.
Com. Samar Mukherjee led the CITU as its General Secretary from 1983 to 1991, having earlier served as its working committee member from the inception of the CITU. He had played a leading role in the historic railway workers strike in 1974. Following the emergency he fought against the attacks on workers.
He made a multidimensional contribution as Party organizer, as writer, as trade unionist and as a Parliamentarian.
Rarely have we seen such an individual who sacrificed all personal interests, living a spartan life in a Party commune in the service of the Party. He was affable, easily accessible and loved by the people.
The Polit Bureau pays its respectful homage to his memory.