T G Biju/IANS
New Delhi, Dec 14: Late Communist leader Indrajit Gupta still remains unbeaten in the list of MPs with the longest Lok Sabha experience, having served the lower house for 11 terms, parliament records show.
Gupta, who was elected to the second Lok Sabha in a bypoll in 1960 from West Bengal as a Communist Party of India (CPI) candidate, continued to be an MP till his death in 2001, with the exception of the sixth Lok Sabha period between 1977 and 1980.
The first Communist to become home minister in the Congress-supported United Front government in 1996, Gupta served the house for 37 years.
"He was a Communist leader. But he was a legendary parliamentarian," said Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) MP Hukumdev Narayan Yadav, who also served the sixth, ninth and 13th Lok Sabhas.
"His name will shine as long as India's parliament is there," Yadav told IANS.
Parliament records show that no one in the present Lok Sabha boasts of 11, 10 or even nine terms in the lower house.
Former prime minister and Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) leader Atal Bihari Vajpayee, former Lok Sabha speaker Somnath Chatterjee and late union minister P.M. Sayeed served the lower house for 10 terms.
While Vajpayee was a member of the 2nd, 4th, 5th, 6th, 7th, 10th, 11th, 12th, 13th and 14th Lok Sabhas, Chatterjee served the house from the 5th to the 14th Lok Sabha without any break.
Chatterjee was leader of the Communist Party of India-Marxist (CPI-M) in the lower house for a long time. Later, he was elected speaker of the 14th Lok Sabha.
The CPI-M expelled Chatterjee from the party for not resigning the speaker's post after the party withdrew support to the first United Progressive Alliance (UPA) government in 2008 over the India-US civil nuclear deal.
Congress leader P.M. Sayeed represented the Lakshadweep Lok Sabha constituency continuously from the 4th to the 13th Lok Sabha. He won the Lok Sabha elections in 1967 and continued to win every election till 2004. Later, he was nominated as a Rajya Sabha MP from Delhi. Sayeed was power minister in the first UPA government. He died in Seoul Dec 18, 2005.
Sayeed's son Muhammed Hamdulla Sayeed, 26, was elected to the Lok Sabha from Lakshadweep in the general elections to become the youngest member of the 15th Lok Sabha.
Janata Dal-United (JD-U) leader George Fernandes, the Congress' Giridhar Gamang, Khagapati Pradhani and late leader Madhavrao Scindia had nine terms in the Lok Sabha, the statistics show.