The Centre of Indian Trade Unions (CITU) is extremely grieved at the passing away of the veteran leader of the working class movement and also a veteran parliamentarian comrade Basudeb Acharia, today on 13th November 2023 after prolonged ailment in a hospital at Hyderabad at the age of 82. Com Basudeb Acharia had been the national Vice President of CITU for decades and had been the permanent invitee to the national secretariat of CITU since last six years.

Comrade Basudeb Acharia got actively involved in the working class movement from the very beginning of active political life and played the frontline role in the trade union movement across the sectors, both organized and unorganized. Till his demise he had been the President of All India Coal Workers Federation and led many militant struggles of coal workers including numerous strike actions. Besides coal, he was also active in coordinating the movement of Railway workers in various segments, viz., Loco Running, railway contract workers of various trades/occupations and played crucial role in getting a large sections of temporary/casual/contract workers regularized as permanent workers in Railways. He was also involved in FCI workers’ movement and many others.  He was also President of All India Union of LIC Agents till its last Conference.

Com Basudeb Acharia also played a memorable role as a veteran Parliamentarian during his long nine time tenure as a member of Lok Sabha, elected from West Bengal from 1980 till 2014 in championing the cause of the toiling people of the country, both inside and outside the Parliament. He played crucial role as Chairman of the Parliamentary Standing Committee of Railways in opposing, and in many cases halting the neoliberal privatization oriented measures in Railways by the successive govts at the centre. And the most memorable part of his services to the toiling people had been that his door was always open to all the workers irrespective of their trade union affiliations and their states, whosoever approached him for any difficulties/problems. He used to respond to all of them with his intervention.

Comrade Basudeb Acharia throughout his active political life did articulate as to how the movement of the working people is effectively advanced, promoted and also combined through united struggles outside the Parliament along with effective interventions within the Parliamentary forum. His forthright interventions within the Parliament on all the issues and occasions of the struggles of the working people will be remembered for ever.

His failing health owing to various ailments could not deter him from his physical presence and interventions in most of the important struggles by the working class, both at national level and in at sectoral level in numerous sectors. He rarely failed to attend the organizational meetings of CITU. As President of All India Coal Workers Federation, com Acharia used to move to different collieries throughout the country. Even a month or so before his demise, he was seen in attending the dharna of Loco Running Staff, demonstration by FCI godown workers in Adra, Purulia and the adjoining area. Till the last breath, except during his detention in hospital, Com Basudev Acharia rarely failed to remain active in the struggle of the working people from the frontline.

With his passing away, the working class movement lost a stalwart leader with the strongest conviction in the ideology of the working class and the determinant role of the working class in the battle for change of the exploitative system; a big void is created which is difficult to fill up.

CITU conveys its heartfelt condolences to the bereaved family members of the departed leader, dips its banner and submits homage of respect to the great contribution of comrade Basudeb Acharia for the cause of the people and the toiling class. Red Salute to Comrade Basudeb Acharia……    

Tapan Sen
General Secretary

Read 2881 times