Somnath Chatterjee is no more


Date: 13.08.2018 :


Former Lok Sabha speaker Somnath Chatterjee [1929-2018] died this morning in Kolkata days after he was admitted to hospital with a kidney ailment. He was 89 years old. Mr Chatterjee, who was admitted to Belle Vue hospital on August 8, was put on ventilator support after he suffered a heart attack. His condition turned critical on Sunday morning. “He died at 8:15 am,” Belle Vue chief executive Pradip Tondon told news agency IANS.


Chatterjee, who was associated with the Communist Party of India (Marxist), served as Lok Sabha Speaker from 2004 to 2009 during the UPA-I rule. An advocate by profession, he actively joined politics in 1968. He became a Member of the Lok Sabha in 1971 and was elected for the first time as an independent candidate supported by the CPI(M).


In 2008, he was expelled from CPI (M) for not resigning as the Speaker after the party withdrew’s its support to the UPA alliance.

Father’s Name Late Shri N.C. Chatterjee
Mother’s Name Late Smt. Binapani Debi
Date of Birth 25 Jul 1929
Place of Birth Tezpur (Assam)
Marital Status Married
Date of Marriage 07 Feb 1950
Spouse’s Name Smt. Renu Chatterjee
No. of Sons 1
No.of Daughters 2
M.A. (Cantab), Bar-at-Law
Educated at Calcutta University, Calcutta; Cambridge University and Middle Temple (U.K.)
Profession Advocate
Trade Unionist, Social Worker
Permanent Address
(i) P-514, Raja Basanta Roy Road,
Kolkata- 700 029
Tels. (033)464-4321,466-2203,464-6666
Fax: (033) 4662900
(ii) Office Address (Kolkata)
Office of Hon`ble Speaker Lok Sabha
Raj Bhawan Annexe,
Kolkata – 700 062
Tels. (033) 22000160, 22000162,
Fax: (033) 22000161
Present Address
Office Address (Delhi) – 17, Parliament House,
New Delhi – 110 001
Tels. (011) 23017795, 23017914, 23792927
Residential Address – 20, Akbar Road,
New Delhi – 110 011
Tels. (011) 23014011, 23014022
Fax: 23016212
Tels. (011) 23014011, 23014022
Fax: 23016212
Positions Held
1968 onwards Member, Communist Party of India (Marxist) [C.P.I.(M)]
1971 Elected to 5th Lok Sabha
Member, Joint Committee on Amendment of Election Laws
1971-77 Member, Committee of Privileges
Member, Joint Committee on Offices of Profit
1977 Re-elected to 6th Lok Sabha (2nd term)
1977-79 Chairman, Committee on Subordinate Legislation
Member, Joint Select Committee on Prasar Bharati Bill
Member, Consultative Committee, Ministry of Law, Justice and Company Affairs
1980 Re-elected to 7th Lok Sabha (3rd term)
1980-84 Member, Consultative Committee, Ministry of Finance
Member, Committee of Privileges
1985 Re-elected to 8th Lok Sabha (4th term)
1986-89 Member, Rules Committee
Member, Committee of Privileges
Member, Joint Committee on Lok Pal Bill
Member, Joint Committee on Prasar Bharati Bill
1987 Member, State Committee, [C.P.I.(M)], West Bengal
1989 Re-elected to 9th Lok Sabha (5th term)
1989 -2004 Leader, [C.P.I.(M)] Parliamentary Party, Lok Sabha
1990 Member, Committee to Review Lok Sabha Secretariat Rules, 1955
1990-91 Chairman, Committee of Privileges
Member, General Purposes Committee
Member, Consultative Committee, Ministry of Home Affairs
1991 Re-elected to 10th Lok Sabha (6th term)
1991-93 Chairman, Committee on Subordinate Legislation
1993-96 Chairman, Committee on Railways
1996 Re-elected to 11th Lok Sabha (7th term)
1996-97 Chairman, Committee on Communications
1998 Re-elected to 12th Lok Sabha (8th term)
Member, Central Committee, CPI(M)
1998-99 Chairman, Committee on Communications
Member, General Purposes Committee
Member, Consultative Committee, Ministry of Home Affairs
1999 Re-elected to 13th Lok Sabha (9th term)
Leader, C.P.I. (M) Parliamentary Party, Lok Sabha
1999-2000 Chairman, Committee on Communications
Member, Business Advisory Committee
Member, General Purposes Committee
2000-2001 Member, Committee on Ethics
2002-2004 Chairman, Committee on Information Technology (two terms)
2004 Re-elected to 14th Lok Sabha( 10th term)
4 June 2004 onwards Speaker, Lok Sabha
Positions held as Speaker Chairman, (i) Business Advisory Committee; (ii) Rules Committee; (iii) General Purposes Committee (iv) Joint Committee on Installation of Portraits/Statues of National Leaders and Parliamentarians in Parliament House Complex and (iv) Standing Committee of the Conference of the Presiding Officers of Legislative Bodies in India
President, (i) Indian Parliamentary Group; (ii) National Group of Inter-Parliamentary Union; and (iii) India Branch of the Commonwealth Parliamentary Association (CPA); Acting Chairman, Executive Committee, Asia Region of CPA (till 7 September 2004); Regional Representative Asia Region to the CPA, Executive Committee (till 7 September 2004); Chairman, Executive Committee, India Region of CPA (7 September 2004 onwards); Regional Representative, India Region, to the CPA Executive Committee (7 September 2004 -9 September 2005), Vice-President, CPA (9 September 2005 to 8 September, 2006); President, CPA (9 September, 2006 onwards)


Constituency   : Bolpur (West Bengal)
Literary, Artistic & Scientific Accomplishments
Collection of Speeches delivered in Fifth and Sixth Lok Sabhas; contributed articles in leading journals and publications including Lok Sabha publications; contributed artilcles in “25 years of Parliament” and “50 years of Parliament” (L.S.S. Publications)
Social And Cultural Activities
Connected with various educational, cultural and professional institutions and trade unions
Special Interests
Law and civil liberties; industries and problems relating to education
Favourite Pastime and Recreation
Gardening, reading and watching sports events
Sports and Clubs
Member, Executive Committee, Mohan Bagan Athletic Club; Member, (i) Lake Club; (ii) Calcutta Club; (iii) Bengal Club; (iv) Bhowanipore Club; (v) Cricket Association of Bengal, Calcutta; (vi) India International Centre; (vii) India Habitat Centre, New Delhi and Chairman, (i) Bengal Table Tennis Association; and (ii) Life Saving Society, Calcutta
Countries Visited
Widely travelled; Member, Indian Parliamentary Delegation to (i) C.P.A. Conference, Fiji, 1983; (ii) European Union countries and the European Parliament, 1988; (iii) I.P.U. Conference, Stockholm, 1992; (iv) Golden Jubilee Celebrations of the UN, New York, 1996 and (v) I.P.U. Conference, Beijing, 1996; led the Indian Parliamentary Delegation to (i) 50th Commonwealth Parliamentary Conference in Canada, 2004; (ii) 111th Assembly of the IPU in Geneva, 2004; (iii) Japan-October- November 2004, (iv) 112th Assembly of IPU, Manila, April 2005; (v) Trinidad and Tobago, May-June, 2005 and (vi) Turkey, June 2005 (vii) 51st Commonwealth Parliamentary Conference in Fiji Islands, 1-10 September 2005; (viii) 113th Assembly of IPU, Geneva, October, 2005; (ix) 18th Commonwealth Speakers and Presiding Officers Conference in Nairobi, January, 2006; (x) CPA Mid-year Ex Co Meeting, Isle of Man, 2006; (xi) attended 100th Anniversary of the Parliamentary Reforms in Finland at Helsinki, 1-4 June, 2006 during which he met the President, Prime Minister and Speaker of Edus Kunta; (xii) CPA/Wilton Park Conference, London, June, 2006 and (xiii) led an IPD to Germany in June, 2006 on the invitation of the President of Bundestag (Parliament); it was a bilateral visit during which he also visited Hannover and Berlin; (xiv) led an IPD to the People`s Republic of China from 3-8 July, 2006 during which the Indian Parliament signed its first MOU with its counterpart in China seeking to enhance Parliamentary exchange and cooperation; (xv) led an IPD to 52nd Commonwealth Parliamentary Conference in Abuja, Nigeria in September, 2006; and (xvi) led an IPD to Greece from 25 to 28 September, 2006; (xvii) led an IPD to Saudi Arabia from 9 to 13 February, 2007; (xviii) led an IPD to Vietnam from 25 to 27 March, 2007 and (xix) attended the CPA Executive Committee Meeting in Cyprus from 17 to 19 April, 2007.
Other Information
Senior Advocate, Supreme Court and Calcutta High Court; Senior Government Advocate, Calcutta High Court, 1969-70; has been Chairman/President/Member of various educational institutions, public sector organisations, trade unions, cultural, sports organisations and professional bodies as well as Parliamentary Committees; Chairman, (i) West Bengal Industrial Development Corporation Ltd., from 1994 to 2004; (ii) West Bengal Handicrafts Development Corporation Ltd., Calcutta upto 1995; (iii) West Bengal Projects Ltd.; (iv) Pulver Ash Project Ltd.; (v) Mayurakshi Cotton Mills upto 1995; (vi) Rural Cancer Society; (vii) Bolpur Sub-divisional Hospital, Bolpur, Birbhum; (viii) Advisory Committee, K.S. Roy T.B. Hospital, Calcutta; (ix) Jadavpur Stadium Committee, Calcutta; (x) Sriniketan Santiniketan Development Authority; President, (i) Managing Committee of Mitra Institution, Bhowanipur Branch, Calcutta; (ii) Governing Body, Bolpur College, Bolpur, Birbhum; (iii) Governing Body, Basirhat College, Basirhat, 24 Parganas (North); (iv) Governing Body, Basantidevi College, Calcutta upto 1997; (v) Governing Body, Bengal Music College, Calcutta; (vi) High Court Employees Association, Calcutta till 1995; (vii) Central Government Forms Press Workers Union, Calcutta; (viii) Union Jute Staff Association, Calcutta; (ix) Biecco Lawrie Employees Union, Calcutta; (x) India Tobacco Workers Union, Calcutta; (xi) K.S. Roy T.B. Hospital Employees Union, Jadavpur, Calcutta; (xii) All India ITC Workers Federation; (xiii) National Federation of Printing Stationery Publication Employees Union, till 1999; (xiv) Chittaranjan Seva Sadan and Cancer Hospital Employees Union, Calcutta; (xv) Calcutta Mint Workers Union, Calcutta; (xvi) Coordination Committee of the Unions and Associations of Mint Workers, Calcutta; (xvii) Federation of NJMC Staff Associations; (xviii) Infusion (India) Workers Union, Calcutta;Member,(i) Senate, University of Calcutta, till 1999; (ii) Syndicate, University of Calcutta, till 1995; (iii) Court, Viswabharati, 1997 and 2000; (iv) Asiatic Society, Calcutta; (v) Supreme Court Bar Association; (vi) Bar Association of India; (vii) Indian Law Institute; (viii) Committee for Courses of Study in Law, University of Burdwan; (ix) Committee on the Reorganisation of Press Council set up by Government of India; (x) General Council, Mitra Institution, Bhowanipur; (xi) International Law Association; (xii) Advisory Council, Calcutta Metropolitan Development Authority, Calcutta; (xiii) Steering Committee of the West Bengal Branch of the Peoples Union for Civil Liberties and Democratic Rights; (xiv) All India Civil Liberties Council; (xv) Democratic Lawyers Association; (xvi) Bar Association, Calcutta; (xvii) Bar Library, Calcutta; (xviii) Netaji Indoor Stadium Committee, Calcutta; (xix) Programme Advisory Committee, All India Radio, Calcutta, 1980; (xx) Select Committee on Companies Law Amendment Bill; (xxi) Select Committee on Direct Taxes Amendment Bill; (xxii) Select Committee on Constitution (32nd) Amendment Bill; (xxiii) Select Committee on Code of Criminal Procedure Bill; and (xxiv) Select Committee on Central Sales Tax (Amendment) Bill; Connected with various Trade Union Organisations; (xxv)Conferred ‘Outstanding Parliamentarian’ Award, 1996 by Indian Parliamentary Group and honoured with “Congressional Medal of Achievement” by the House of Representatives of the Congress (Parliament) of Philippines, April, 2005; (xxvi) Conferred the Medal of Honour by the Hellenic Parliament of Greece in September 2006; Awarded Honourary Fellowship by Jesus College, Cambridge University, U.K. in December 2006; Conferred the Justice M.G. Ranade Award for outstanding contribution in the field of Parliamentary Democracy in February 2006

Source: Lok Sabha archives