Comrade Muzaffar Ahmed, called affectionately as Kakababu, was attracted towards Marxism under the influence of Russian Revolution. Following the basic principles of the November Revolution, he took initiative to build the Communist Party in this country. Kakababu did not have an iota of doubt about the class base for formation of the party.
The necessity of the working class leadership in the Communist Party and revolutionary role of this class has been emphasised in his various speeches and articles. Practically, when he was in the process of building Communist party in different provinces of the then undivided Bengal, he carried out the party work with an aim to attract the Tram workers, Jute workers, porters, sweepers and other conservancy workers.
Kakababu was an extremely thoughtful person. He had deep knowledge in various subjects, particularly he had an intense attraction towards classical literature. He used to study for about 7 to 8 hours every day. We have seen him engrossed in reading whenever he was alone in our Secretariat room at Alimuddin Street office. He had huge collection of books. Even he used to get books from abroad. The lions share of the collection in Muzaffar Ahmad Pathagar (library) at CPI(M) state committee office belongs to him. While writing articles he used to give due importance on the correctness of the facts and information on the related subject. When Kakababu started writing on the history of building of the party, the facility to utilise the archives, was not there to that extent, as is available now. He collected those documents with great deal of efforts. He collected authentic documents from different parts of the world through correspondences. He had to spend long time and effort for searching such documents.
CHOOSING PARTY CADRE
The special feature of Kakababu’s behaviour was to know personally party comrades and to collect information about the well being of their families. It was a great task for a party organiser to choose proper party workers which he used to keep in his mind always. He used to tell very often that many people will come around the Communist Party, would love the party and would also work for the party. By identifying the real party workers amongst them, the party leadership will have to take responsibility to mould them as a Communist. Which work will be done properly by whom , if any party worker becomes inactive in a particular work, the party leadership should take the responsibility to make him active by assigning him proper work. He used to supervise this matter personally. I learnt from him that after the party split, the work of leading party worker who were connected with State, Centre and with various mass fronts were evaluated in the party Secretariat. Further distribution of work was done on the basis of such evaluation. Till the fag end of his life, he emphasised on the subject of choosing party workers.
Punctuality and regularity were essential parts of Kakababu’s life. Now a days dearth of such matters are distinctly visible. These are salient features to learn from Kakababu’s life. He never liked delay while attending meetings. Kakababu breathed his last on 18th December, 1973. Just one day before, on 17th at about 9.00 p.m. I visited him at Kimber Nursing Home. When I was about to depart, Kakababu told me "You should come tomorrow at 7.00 A.M., I have something to talk with you". Before I felt asleep, I prepared mentally to visit the Nursing Home in the morning at 7.00 A.M. sharp because Kakababu will be offended if I reach there even at 7.15 A.M. But Kakababu never saw the next morning. He passed away in the early morning at 4-00 A.M.
Comrade Muzaffar Ahmad was not only a top Communist leader but was also highly regarded as a top class intellectual during that time. He had intimate connection with the contemporary famous litterateur and intellectuals. But his real identity was as a Communist. A true Communist like easy and simple living was his special character. He was an internationalist in real sense. He used to believe firmly that one cannot be a real Communist unless he believes in internationalism and real patriotism. That's why he always tried to examine closely whether those who are taken as primary members of the party were anti -imperialist or not.
From correspondences of Kakababu it is learnt that he had connection with anti-imperialist forces in various corners of our country. When we observe political programmes, we mostly forget to organise anti-imperialist movement. To remember Kakababu, we must be conscious about the danger of imperialism and the obligatory role of the party in anti-imperialist movement.
During the inception of building Communist Party in India, the British imperialists were out to destroy it in the nip of the bud. The Kanpur and Meerut conspiratory litigations were a few examples. In Meerut conspiratory trial Comrade Muzaffar Ahmad made a strong statement standing in the dock, exposing the character of British imperialists there in and he never hesitated to express the reasons why he was organising the Communist Party. At that time though there was no Party Programme, yet his statement was considered as the document of the Party Programme for long time.
On the occasion of birth day of Kakababu, there is a necessity to remember the threat posed by imperialists today. The Indian government which at one time was in the leadership of non-aligned movement (NAM), the same government during the regime of BJP led coalition has become a mere appendage of American imperialists. In the international arena instead of fostering joint action jointly with the third world countries, it is adopting brazenly pro-American stance. On the question of Palestine, giving up the principled stand it has adopted an outrightly pro-Israel policy. It has openly corroborated with the National Missile Defence System (NMD) of Bush Administration even as Russia and China and many of the US allies themselves are opposing it. These are few examples in support of above.
Not only the shift towards pro-American policy but also BJP led coalition government is dragging India inside the circle of American defence strategy. Vajpayee government is trying to make India a minor partner in world-wide military-diplomatic design of American imperialism. During his visit to India, Henry Shalton, the Military Head of United States reached an understanding with the Indian Defence establishment, which has dangerous consequences for Indian Defence.
In the name of Indo-American military co-operation, the whole Indian military forces have been thrown open for surveillance by United States.
The involvement of America in the recent Indo-Pak summit became very obvious when the dates for the Summit were announced globally by America. What could be the matter of more shame for a sovereign State! The people at large have to be mobilised for a strong movement against such increasing interference by America in the field of Indian politics, economy & military matters. We got to take this oath on the occasion of birth day of Kakababu.
PEASANTRY TOPPED HIS AGENDA
Kakababu very often used to tell us to chalk out the programme of movement based on the given situation. In ‘Langal’ & ‘Ganabani’ he repeatedly wrote that the problems of farmers should be taken up foremost as majority of our people are dependent on agriculture and without their upliftment, welfare of the country as a whole would not be possible. He wrote against centralisation of land.
All Bengal Provincial Krishak Sabha was formed through a conference held at Patrasayer of Bankura district on 27th & 28th March, 1937. In that conference, Comrade Muzaffar Ahmad read out a speech which was adopted as political-organisational document of Krishak Sabha.
As Kakababu had pointed out in early 20’s itself the main problem of our country was the plight of peasantry, the same is the principal problem even to-day. From this we can realise his farsightedness. To-day due to the liberalisation policy followed by BJP led coalition government, we have to keep a close watch on the crisis which has developed in the life of peasants. Due to the pressure from WTO, even the rich farmers are also not safe. The farm houses of cotton, tobacco, coffee, sugar, edible oil etc are in deep crisis. Sugar cane growers are being compelled to burn their produce. Many years ago Kakababu raised the slogan against centralisation of land. To-day, after such long years, that problem has not been smoothened except in the states of West Bengal, Kerala and Tripura.
FIRMNESS IN IDEOLOGY
The contribution of Kakababu for the building of party organisation is undeniable. He used to always remind that Communist Party is the Party of poor people. That is why he emphasised all the time to bring working people, landless labourers together in the Party. He gave due importance to the role of intellectuals. The famous intellectuals of Kolkata -- Dr. Bhupendranath Datta, Kazi Nazrul Islam, Radharaman Mitra were very much close to him. Yet, his main aim was to attract the poor and middle class people into the Party. Kakababu was having unfathomable faith on ‘Communist International’. He believed that one should follow, word by word the principles of Communist International. He used to tell repeatedly, "Communist Party is a different Party." The principles of democratic centralism is the main foundation of a communist organisation. To infringe upon such principles means hitting and weakening the very foundation of the Party. If it continues, Communist Party will be turned into a mere political group. There will be no separate identity of the Party.
On the question of maintaining discipline in the Party he was firm and unyielding. He used to tell that without a disciplined workers group, no Communist Party can forge ahead. Maintenance of tough discipline was one of his main weapons in building the Party. During 1967-68, when naxalites left the Party, Kakababu’s many intimate friends were in its leadership. Yet, Kakababu strongly wrote an article where he mentioned "Party is greater than friends". He wrote there that allegiance to an individual can not be larger than that of Party. Every communist should be firm to the ideology. Problems do exist in our Party till to-day. In many cases, it is found, that attachment towards relatives and friends surpasses the firmness to the Party ideology. This idea, on class consideration, is against our ideology. Individual allegiance can never be higher. For the follower of ideology , it itself is his great friend. This is the great education which we have got from Kakababu.
He himself was not only firm on ideology but also specifically acted to bring back in right path, those, who deviated from ideology. When poet Nazrul Islam became to some extent confused after his first marriage, Kakababu stood by his side as guardian and made efforts to bring back Nazrul in the circle of ideology. He succeeded in that and the same Nazrul, after being rectified, propagated the message of equality. Nazrul has mentioned time and again the role of Comrade Muzaffar Ahmad in his life. To raise the human values, the life of Kakababu, as an example is uncomparable.
Kakababu never tolerated the nourishment of the concept of factionalism in the Party organisation. He always maintained that Party is larger than the faction and to save the party, every communist should fight tooth and nail against factionalism. Deviation from communist ethics was an unpardonable offense to him. He used to say that immoral acts are not only anti-communist but also against humanity itself. The person who is having intelligence, consciousness, sense of justice and morality, he will never resort to any immoral act. As per the version of Kakababu, communists are the most clean man in the society. Because, without clean men, how can a clean society emerge? So a real Communist Party should be the party of most clean people of the society.
Please come up, let us promise to build our Party, a real Communist Party on Kakababu’s birth day.
Peoples’ Democracy, September 02, 2001