Somnath Lahiri

Somnath Lahiri (1 September 1909 – 19 October 1984)[1] was an Indian statesman, writer and a leader of Communist Party of India. He was a member of Constituent Assembly of India from Bengal and later served as a Member of West Bengal Legislative assembly.

Somnath Lahiri
সোমনাথ লাহিড়ী
Somnath Lahiri 1937.jpg
Member of Constituent Assembly of India
In office
9 December 1946 – 24 January 1950
Member of West Bengal Legislative Assembly
In office
Preceded byOffice created
Succeeded byJatin Chakraborty
In office
Preceded bySatyendra Kumar Basu
Succeeded byMani Sanyal
Minister of Information, Government of West Bengal
In office
Minister of Local Self Government, Development and Planning, West Bengal
In office
Personal details
Born(1909-09-01)1 September 1909
Died19 October 1984(1984-10-19) (aged 75)
Political partyCommunist Party of India
OccupationPolitical Activist and Writer

Early lifeEdit

Lahiri became attracted to Marxism under the guidance of Bengali revolutionary Bhupendranath Datta in 1930. Initially, he worked in E.B. Railway workers' union and played an important role with Dr. Ronen Sen and Abdul Halim in building the Communist party's Calcutta Committee.[2][3]


Lahiri joined the Communist party in 1931, and started working in Rail and Trum workers Union in Kolkata. In 1933, he organized the first labour association of Tata Iron & Steel in Jamshedpur. According to the party's resolution of 1938, he became attached with Muzaffar Ahmed and Bankim Mukherjee and joined the Left consolidation committee. He also led the historical Sweeper strike of Kolkata Municipal Corporation in 1944. Lahiri was the sole Communist member in the Constituent Assembly in 1946. He also substantially contributed to the debates regarding drafting of the Constitution of India.[2][3]

Somnath Lahiri had said in CAD, Vol III, p. 404. that - "I feel that many of these fundamental rights have been framed from the point of view of a police Constable… you will find that very minimum rights have been conceded and are almost invariably followed by a proviso. Almost every article is followed by a proviso which takes away the right almost completely,..What should be our conception of fundamental rights ?....We want to incorporate every one of those rights which our people want to get."[4]


Somnath Lahiri was a well known political intellectual and writer. In 1931 he translated the book The State and Revolution to Bengali. Samyobad (Socialism) is another book of his. He was the editor of Swadhinata, a daily left political magazine. He also wrote many articles in Ganashakti, Aage Cholo, Kalanatar. Kalijuger golpo. The short stories collection of Somnath Lahiri was first published in 1967.[5]


  1. ^ Social Science Textbook for Class XI - Part III. 2006. p. 57. ISBN 9788189611194.
  2. ^ a b Subodh C. Sengupta & Anjali Basu, Part I (2002). Sansad Bangali Charitavidhan (Bengali). Kolkata: Sahitya Sansad. p. 605. ISBN 81-85626-65-0.
  3. ^ a b "Remembering Somnath Lahiri on His Birth Centenary". 5 October 2009. Retrieved 2 September 2017.
  4. ^ Indian Constitution at Work, NCERT, p.36
  5. ^ Somnath Lahiri (1967). Kalijuger Golpo (Bengali). Kolkata: Manisha Publication.