Thiruvananthapuram | Communist Party Of India, CPI(M) veteran and former Kerala chief minister VS Achuthanandan, who turned 92 today, said he will continue the struggle to defend the interests of the people. Except for a few visitors who called on him with birthday greetings, there were no celebrations at the official residence here of the Leader of Opposition in Kerala Assembly.
Talking to journalists at his residence, Achuthanandan side-stepped a question as to whether he would contest the Assembly polls due next year. I am concentrating now on the civic polls that are to be held next month, said the Leftist veteran, who continues to be the star campaigner for the CPI-M-led Left Democratic Front (LDF) Opposition in the state.
Achuthanandan began his political career as part of trade unions and joined the Congress in 1939. In 1964, he became a founder leader of CPI(M) after the split in CPI that year. Velikkakath Sankaran Achuthanandan, popularly known as VS, was born on October 20, 1923, in a working class family in Punnapra in Alappuzha district. Compelled to give up formal education at the primary school stage, he was soon attracted to the fledgling trade union movement in Alappuzha, a bustling commercial town, in the early decades of last century.
His life since then has been closely linked with the history of the Communist movement in the state. Achuthanandan became a CPI(M) politburo member in 1996 but was dropped from the top party body a few years ago for speaking against its official line on certain issues. He had headed the LDF government between 2006-11.
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