THIRUVANANTHAPURAM: A true Communist always stays ahead of the curve, keeping abreast of the latest know-how and developments to up his battle to transform the world for the better. At 93, veteran Communist apparatchik V S Achuthanandan is a living legend.The oldest living Indian Communist leader in the country, Achuthanandan has now taken to learning Hindi. It was just a decade ago that VS had familiarised himself with the ways of the online world. Even amidst his packed itinerary as Chairman of the Administrative Reforms Commission, VS actually finds time to take regular Hindi classes at the Kowdiar House, his official residence. A college teacher drops in every evening to impart lessons.
It has been almost two years since Achuthanandan started learning Hindi in his free time; the regular classes started only about a year ago. On days when VS is free, the teacher comes in the evening to take classes for about an hour. The nonagenarian leader is reportedly a keen student. Learning Hindi would definitely be an added advantage for him to communicate with party colleagues and well-wishers from across the country, especially during his Delhi visits.
However, sources close to VS say there are no political reasons behind the veteran leader’s new-found love for the national language. “If he comes across anything new and useful that can help him keep himself updated, VS is sure to try a hand. Obviously, taking Hindi classes is one such effort. Being a national leader, he must have felt the need to have a better grip over the language to facilitate easier communication with leaders from across the country,” said sources close to VS.
With just a month remaining before he turns 94, a sprightly VS is still very much active in the state’s socio-political spectrum. Age for him, as the cliche goes, is just a number. Even now, the patriarch never misses a chance to pounce on his political opponents to prove a point.Achuthanandan is the only leader alive today among the 32 CPI national council members who had walked out of the historical CPI meet in 1964 to float the CPM. A long-term CPM state secretary (from 1980 to 1992), VS has been known for his unshakeable stand in dealing with socio-political issues.