The philosophical, political and organizational orientation of Comrade Jaswantha Rao is unparalleled. Comrade Jaswanth’s unshakable convictions helped him to carry on an organized work in the revolutionary movement. He penned some writings under the pen name Prashant. They were full of anger and hatred towards the exploiting system which were boiling in his mind. Jaswanth looked cool and calm. But he was not so calm when it came to politics. His pen was giving a shape of word to what was brewing in the cauldron of his heart.
As a rationalist right from the days of high school and college education he was impressing upon the members of his family to shed the superstitious ideas and practices. In line with the complaint of Students’ Union he revolted against the principal for encouraging caste chauvinism in the Medical College. For this, he was suspended from the college. But it did not deter him. These qualities naturally had moved Comrade Jaswanth towards the Communist philosophy. He molded his life accordingly. Getting emotional is a trait of Comrade Jaswanth. But he did not become a Communist Revolutionary because of these emotions. It was the depth, weight and expanse of his philosophical, ideological and political orientation that molded him into a Communist Revolutionary. He could endure the pain and agony at the last moment of his life in hospital with immense hope towards life and revolution. On August 25th, he assured Comrade Seshamma raising his tone and from behind the mask that “I will come back.” The tone was weak, but roar of his heart was strong.
Comrade Jaswanth analyzed the Covid-19 from the political and economic angle as well as from the people’s point of view and has overcome Corona. But his lungs were in a damaged state since the last two years and they could not recover. He was working breathing only with a 40 per cent of lung power as 60 per cent of lungs were in a state of damage.
I feel. Any one may feel so. What can we say if a Comrade of his level of commitment and capabilities could not win over the ghost of cigarette smoke? Can we call him a slave of Cigarette smoke? Must we appreciate his behavior of caring nothing even when the bells of serious danger were ringing wild? We are the colleagues who kept mum and could do nothing. What is the use of weeping now? Com. Jaswanth was weak in this respect. Yet, he fought valiantly against the exploiting system.
Comrade Jaswanth declared himself as a whole time Cadre in 1976. Since then, he shouldered heavy responsibilities. In the course of various developments in the revolutionary movement, he was fully busy in the work of exposing the imperialist, feudal and comprador bourgeoisie politics. He was fully immerced in this without getting affected by the disunities or divisions in the party. He focused all his concentration on the work needed and directed by the party. He played the role of a teacher in the political classes organized by the party in various areas since 1978. Comrade Jaswanth and AVR held the classes for the members of Girijan Sangham on Marxism Leninism Mao’s Thought. He took several classes on our World Outlook, Marxism Leninism Mao’s Thought.
He translated several articles. He acted as a translator in all meetings to Comrade Viswam from telugu to English. The Foreword written by Comrade Jaswanth to the second print of Comrade Tarimela Nagi Reddy’s book INDIA MARTGAGED points out his analytic power. While printing the Tamil version of INDIA MORTGAGED, a talk came that publishing Comrade D.V.’s FOREWORD may be enough. But the Tamil translator Com. Kovai Eswaran insisted that the Foreword written by Com. Jaswanth also must be published in Tamil.
Since 1981, the Janasakti (telugu) magazine had reached a level under Comrade Jaswanth, Madhu and Ranganath. Some Comrades were shifted to Vijayawada from Kakinada for the purpose of Janasakti. Since then, Com. Jaswanth had taken the responsibility of Party’s English magazines too. With the unity of seven CR Organizations, Janasakti became the Central English Organ of the party. As decided by the Central Committee Comrade Jaswanth had taken the responsibility as its editor and brought it out from Bombay as its centre. Since the unity with Com. Kanu Sanyal, The Class Struggle became the Central Organ of our party. Since then, Com. Jaswanth edited it till the last moment of his life.
Comrade Jaswanth played a role in all unity talks with the fraternal CR Organizations. The initiative shown by Comrades Jaswanth and Sadhan Sarkar in 1990’ in the context of the drafting of Joint Note of three revolutionary groups on Unity in concluding the discussions on the question, ‘whether the formation of CPI (ML) was positive? Or negative?’ which was blocking the unity can never be forgotten. Com. Jaswanth was looking as though he was not concerned about anything. But, in reality, he was concerned about everything. He made it as a habit of normal life since his student days.
Even in a difficult time, he never allowed a feeling of losing some thing to manifest. He lived a life of proletarian revolutionary cadre truly dedicated and committed to the cause. He was most affectionately taking care of the cadre, together with the ordinary cadre of the Kondamodalu movement. They too were having intimate relations with Com. Jaswanth. In November 1982, I observed how he immediately prepared a course of movement basing on a 15 minute talk we both had on the repression against the Kondamodalu girijan movement and the incident where two of our Comrades lost their lives in police firing. One can understand how politically and mentally he was attached with that movement. The booklet we brought out which explained that all our people and all classes of people are now living under the shadow of fascist crest and proposed, therefore, we must works linking it in the movement against repression and State’s policy of eliminating the revolutionaries stands out as an approach even today for the movement against repression. It enables to rally all classes, sections, all revolutionary, left and progressive forces into this movement against repression. He prepared this booklet immediately after a discussion on the issue. Here I mentioned only two instances where Com. Jaswanth responded with remarkable fastness.
Com. Jaswanth was one invisible intimate Comrade to all, more particularly to the cadre of the movement. In 2013, he proposed the holding of 50th Anniversary of Janasakti and the publication of a special issue with an analysis of the role of Janasakti in 50years. We deferred this proposal. We thought that our analyses may cause some difficulty for the unification of revolutionaries. So we thought of bringing it later. We could not take up this task only with a view that there was need to observe patience, restraint and balance in the interests of unity of revolutionaries and united action with the progressive forces. When I said to Com. Jaswanth, ‘Comrade, it is not a small job to analyze the role of Janasakti since 1963’, Jaswanth’s reply was: ‘ok, let us do it; let us bring it out!’ Comrade became a Martyr without carrying out this stupendous task. Comrade Jaswanth was so strong that he never hesitated to take any amount of toil and strain upon himself. Let us take up the task left to us by Com. Nagi Reddy with his Martyrdom. 42 years back, in 1978, Com.Jaswanth firmly declared: ‘Let us study him; research, learn and apply and find a way.’ He remained unwavering and unbending in his firm resolve till he breathed his last. Comrade Jaswanth is an ideal for us. There are Comrades to overcome the gap created by Com. Jaswanth’s loss, pick up and carry forward the heritage of political wealth developed by Com. Jaswanth and the values he represented. Let us wipe out our tears and march ahead to realize our aims.
General Secretary, CPI(ML)