Wednesday, March 19, 2008

Eee Yem..

Today is March 19th.

10 years ago on a sultry evening I saw a very depressed Surkhi leaning against the railings in the corridor of Alpha Hostel. He was my senior,a really nice guy, a true comrade who believed in the essence of communism rather than in beating his own classmates.

I asked him -"Surkhi, Enthu patti.."
He said - "Nammude Sakhavu Poyada..."

Thinking about some of his local comrades I asked - "Aaru?"

"EMS."



While he said that his voice almost broke. That was the first time I realized EMS was something an integral part of Keralites. Till then to me he was the first Chief Minister of Kerala.

Later that evening I saw masses belonging to all classes, from all parts of Kerala arriving at the hall where he was laid down for the public to pay the last respects. Some of them were crying. There were ladies who broke into a loud cry, as if some one dear in the family has died. At that time I never knew his importance to the people in Kerala.

That night Surkhi's sad face gave me a sleepless night. I was thinking about EMS and blaming myself for not knowing him much well as Surkhi knew.

As I grew up, I started reading about him and about his works. I never left any single article, both for and against him. And today is his 10th death anniversary. Its 10 years of Kerala without EMS and today as the Communist Party in Kerala is fighting their own demons, I wonder how EMS would have fit into it.

Neither of the Malayalam Dailies online editions, which boasts about big circulations, have a home page article for him. I haven't seen the newspapers though. Deshabhimani has given an editorial where Pinarayi Vijayan says that EMS' memories will give them strength to fight. I hope it is not for another violent killing in Kannur or anywhere in India.

Slowly EMS is getting forgotten, and I hope we do not come to a situation; where a day will come when he would be just another comrade for the left parties

Long live Comrade EMS.

Photo Courtesy : Malayala Manorama

4 comments:

Sree said...

Well written memoir Dhanu. I also remember the days when whole state was stunned to accept the reality of Sakhavu EMS. I wonder if there was any other time when sakhavu EK Nayanar couldn't control his tears...
Couldnt agree with you more what you wrote about Pinarayi's comment.

Red salute to the comrade..

Jiby said...

He was a brilliant man, an intellectual and pragmatic politician...the greatest tragedy of the CPM is that they haven't been able to replace him with anyone at the top who can interpret established dogma to meet the needs of the day and explain it to the party rank and file.

The cpi(m) as a thinking party is long dead. If at all there are thinkers, I guess they are at the fringes. Isaac and Baby are pretenders. It is only political strongmen like Pinarayi and Kodiyeri who will rise to the top again.

mathew said...

i remember my dad very sad on that day..although i didnt know much about him back there was a mood of genuine sadness..EMS was a man of his times..like JIby said the party misses people like him..It is really sorry state of affairs now..both for congress and CPI(M)..I dont see even one single leader whom we can admire..

pophabhi said...

I still remember that day when Achan didnt head to office, but just sat at home with a blank face reading the old marxist study class materials written by EMS. My ever energetic achan was down with a sulky face and didnt even talk to us for the whole day. When I finally lost the patience and told "EMS poyathinu ithrem vishamamo?", he just turned himself to the sky and told "Njangale okke veerulla aanungal aakiyathu adhehamaaneda. Ninakkathu manasilaavilla". The first thing I did next day was to start reading the material he was referring. EMS is a once in a lifetime material...So is AKG. The current maroon comrades are nothing but old cloths...Good for nothing.
Hope those old details will redeem, sometime! Thanks for reminding me da. For sometime, I could slip to the past.