Promode Gogoi passes away - CPI leader’s cremation in Sivasagar

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By OUR BUREAU
  • Published 7.04.12
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April 6: An important chapter in Assam’s Left politics closed this morning with the demise of veteran CPI leader Promode Gogoi in a Guwahati nursing home.

Gogoi, who was admitted to GNRC Hospitals here on April 2 after his return from Patna where he was elected to the national executive of the CPI, suffered a cerebral stroke on Wednesday night following which he was put on life support.

Mrinal Ali Hazarika, public relations officer of GNRC Hospitals, said doctors declared him dead at 9.35 this morning. He had suffered profuse bleeding because of the stroke.

A bachelor, his cremation will take place in his native Sivasagar tomorrow afternoon, long-time party colleague Drupad Borgohain said.

Chief minister Tarun Gogoi has asked cultural affairs minister Pranati Phukan to attend the last rites.

Gogoi, 82, was a central secretariat member of the CPI, president of the All India Trade Union Congress and vice-president of the World Federation of Trade Unions. He was elected to the Assam Assembly five times from Sivasagar constituency from 1967. He was the minister for flood control in Prafulla Kumar Mahanta’s cabinet from 1996 to 2001.

As the news of Gogoi’s death spread, a large number of party workers, leaders and admirers, including Ulfa chairman Arabinda Rajkhowa, visited the hospital to pay tribute. His body was then taken to his Rani Bagan residence and then to the Assembly.

At the condolence meeting, Speaker Pranab Gogoi, a long-time political rival of Gogoi, said, “He was a brilliant legislator and, most importantly, a good human being. It is a huge loss to the state.”

The leader’s body was then taken to the party office. In his honour, the CPI state headquarters and district units will fly the party flag at half mast for a week.

The party’s national secretariat has sent condolences to the state unit and has dipped the red flag in memory of the veteran leader.

Drupad Borgohain said the party would always work for the ideals espoused by Gogoi. “We will carry forward his vision and ideals. Younger leaders are being groomed who will grow up to take on the mantle,” he added.

In Sivasagar, party members visited the CPI office near Station Charali to pay tribute to the departed soul as Gogoi’s house on BG Road is locked with his immediate family members rushing to Guwahati two days ago when he took ill.

Assam governor J.B. Patnaik, the chief minister, PCC president Bhubaneswar Kalita led the state in mourning Gogoi’s demise. Senior political leaders like Mahanta, Kumar Deepak Das, Atul Bora, Anjan Dutta, Kalyan Gogoi and Prasanta Phukan described Gogoi’s demise as a huge loss to the state.

Tributes also poured in from Manipur and Tripura.

Senior CPI leader P. Parijat Singh said at the party office in Guwahati, “He played a crucial role in helping the CPI strike root in Manipur. He was our guardian.”

Moirangthem Nara Singh, secretary of Manipur CPI unit, said, “Comrade Gogoi is one of the tallest CPI leaders not only in the Northeast but also in India.”

Tripura CPI secretary Prashanta Kopali said, “He was one of the pillars of our party in the Northeast, a noble-hearted, committed man and ideologically sound. I used to be pleasantly amazed at his profound knowledge of Marxist philosophy and world affairs. We used to look up to him on crucial ideological issues.”