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Chronology of Jyoti Basu`s life

Last Updated: Sunday, January 17, 2010 - 13:42

Kolkata: Jyoti Basu, who died here Sunday, resigned from active politics in 2000 but continued to guide the communist movement in India.

Following is a chronology of his life:

  • Born in Calcutta (now Kolkata), July 8, 1914.
  • Graduated from Presidency College with honours in English. He did his Bar at Law from London where he got introduced to Marxism and politics.
  • Returned to India in 1940. Joined Communist Party of India (CPI).
  • In 1944 he was a functionary of Bengal railway workers` union.
  • In 1946 he was elected to the Bengal legislative assembly, defeating Humayun Kabir of Congress.
  • He won from Baranagar assembly constituency in 1952, 1957, 1962, 1967, 1969 and 1971. He lost the seat in the 1972 snap polls.
  • In 1964, he helped set up the Communist Party of India-Marxist (CPI-M).
  • In 1967, he became deputy chief minister in a coalition government in Bengal.
  • Became chief minister of West Bengal June 21, 1977 and headed the Left Front government till Nov 6, 2000.
  • Narrowly missed a chance to become India`s prime minister in 1996 after his party`s veto. He later called the party decision a "historic blunder".
  • In 2000, he announced his retirement from active politics and stepped down as chief minister on health grounds.
  • In 2004, he played a key role to stitch an alliance between the Left parties and the Congress-led United Progressive Alliance (UPA).


  • First Published: Sunday, January 17, 2010 - 13:42

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