Gholam Yahya Daneshian was born in Sarab of Azerbaijan, 1906. In his early youth, he went to work in the oil fields of Baku with his father. He became a member of comsomol, a communist youth organization, and then the communist party itself. He participated in the training courses of the organization. Through his activities among laborers, especially Iranian laborers, he succeeded to build trust in the Soviet organizations for himself to be appointed as the mayor of Sabunchi town, as the most important oil field of Baku. According to Daneshian, he served in the Soviet military as a reservist lieutenant. During 1937 to 1938, when the Iranians were exiled from the Soviet Azerbaijan, he was sent to Iran on the excuse that he had embezzled the budget of municipality, and had fled to Iran. Apparently, he was commissioned to carry out a duty in Iran, as he was arrested after an arson attack in the arsenal of army in Tehran Khayyam st. in 1929-1930 when he was in Mianeh. He was transferred to Tehran. However, his relationship with the saboteurs was not proved. Eventually, he was released from prison on the eve of Iran’s occupation by the axis troops in 1941. At this time, the Soviets gave him a few wagons of Iran railroad to transport the goods of merchants and meet the expenditure of Azerbaijan Tudeh party.
In Mianeh, he joined the local branch of Tudeh party and its affiliated labor organization. In the first congress of Tudeh party, he became a member of Azerbaijan provincial committee. In 1945, at the time of its foundation, he did not hesitate to become a member of Azerbaijan Democratic party. Soon after, he was one of the organizers of semi military group of Fadaian.
When Azerbaijan was still occupied by the Soviet forces, Azerbaijan Democratic party was formed. Jafar Pishevari formed the party subsequent to consultations with Jafar Bagherov in Baku and the direct material and non material help of Soviet forces in Azerbaijan. So the affiliation of the party to the Soviet Union and the Soviet Azerbaijan communist party was quite obvious at the beginning and it was promoted in the course of time.
Backed by the Soviet troops, in December 1945, the fadaian of Democratic party embarked on an invasion to the Azerbaijan military barracks, and occupied the whole province. Within this period, Gholam Yaha and his comrades plundered the properties of people in various towns of Azerbaijan and through smuggling oil, cheese and sheep to the other side of Iran’s frontiers, made people suffer from the shortage of basic commodities.
Eventually, upon Ahmad Qavam’s visit to the Soviet Union, and his promise to concede north oil concession to the Russians in case they withdrew their forces from Azerbaijan, the Russians evacuated the northern provinces of Iran and ordered the Democratic Party forces not to resist against Iranian troops. Meanwhile some of the leaders of the party including Pishevari and Gholam Yahya left the country via Jolfa borders for the Soviet Union.
Since its defeat in 1946 until its unity with the Tudeh party in 1960, Azerbaijan Democratic party had no independent worth noting presence in Iran’s political scene. Subsequent to the migration of its leadership to Baku, they acted under Bagherov’s supervision. Following the death of Pishevari in a car accident, the blame of which was mostly put on Gholam Yahya, Qassem Cheshm Azar became the leader. In 1957, he was replaced by Gholam Yahya. In the conference for the unity of Tudeh party and Azerbaijan Democratic party, Daneshian became a member of the executive board of Tudeh party.
Backed by the Soviet authorities, Daneshian had a leading role in the important decisions of the party, including replacement of Radmanesh by Iraj Eskandari as the first secretary in 1969 and again Eskandari’s replacement by Nuraddin Kianuri in 1978.
The question of exiling some opponents of the Soviet regime to Siberia, during Daneshian’s presidency over the party is a stigma on his track record. His military skills was at the level of an ordinary soldier. However, the Russian agents called him general. He was a power hungry, despot and illiterate man. He knew the language of the crowds and could attract them through his speeches. He had mastered this ability during his experience among the oil laborers of Baku. He tried his best to annex Iran’s Azerbaijan to the Soviet Union. He betrayed his compatriots to serve the alien powers.
Gholam Yahya retired himself from his activities due to old age in late years before the Islamic revolution and became the honorary president of the party. He died about 1984 in the Soviet Union.