Veteran CPI-M leader and former West Bengal minister Kanti Biswas died at a private hospital here on Wednesday due to lung infection, party sources said.
Biswas aged 84 was a widower and lived with his son and a daughter.
Biswas was youth affairs minister from 1977 to 1982, and held the school education portfolio from 1982 to 1991 and from 1996 to 2006. He was a five time state legislator – winning thrice from Gaighata and on two occasions from Sandeshkhali constituencies of North 24 Parganas district. He hailed from Faridpur district (now in Bangladesh) of undivided Bengal, Biswas was a brilliant student and always stood first in school. He passed his M.Com from Dhaka University in 1956 and was appointed professor in Quaid e Azam Memorial College.
He participated in various programmes of the then banned Communist Party in Pakistan and crossed over to India in 1960 to escape an arrest warrant issued against his name.