Maniratnam's son hogs limelight in CPI(M) Congress

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Coimbatore, Mar 31 (UNI) After CPI(M) General Secretary Prakash Karat, Nanda, a 16-year-old volunteer, is the star attraction in the ongoing 19th party Congress here.

Son of celebrity Kollywood Director Maniratnam, Nanda, a 12th standard student, is among the scores of party volunteers at the mega Congress, yet, he stands apart.

Drawn to Marxism at a tender age, no wonder Nanda had become the blue eyed boy of Mr Karat. Besides some senior leaders, probably he was the only volunteer to have access to the party high command.

''I am just attracted to Marxist theory and nothing else,'' a shy Nanda says, as the electronic media vie with each other for a byte from the young comrade.

''Marxism is the cogent form of theory and it's natural that Marxism should attract anyone. I am not a party member as I am not eligible in terms of age,'' he says, adding that he had just come as a volunteer like any other boy of his age.

Nanda, who had authored a book, prefers to be humble, saying ''it's not a book. It's a 24-page pamphlet on Leninism.'' On his future plans, he says he himself does not know what is in store for him.

About what his parents say on his being a volunteer in the party Congress, a visibly annoyed Nanda shot back ''I don't see my parents coming here. Why don't you ask this question to the other young comrades who are here.'' UNI WS-KS GD JT DB1912

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