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Posts Tagged ‘prachanda’

‘India should have defended civilian supremacy in Nepal’

Posted by ajadhind on May 11, 2009

source
In an interview on the circumstances leading to the dismissal of his country’s army chief and his own subsequent resignation, Prime Minister Prachanda of Nepal tells The Hindu the Maoists will prefer to sit in the opposition rather than see the authority of a democratically elected government undermined.
Excerpts:Controversy has surrounded your decision to sack General Rookmangad Katawal as army chief. He had defied civilian authority since December on the recruitment issue but was going to retire soon. Why precipitate a political crisis when his tenure was ending anyway?
When the question of recruitment came, we knew what was at stake was the Comprehensive Peace Agreement and its implementation. So we discussed the issue within government and also tried to convince other political parties that this man is trying to challenge civilian supremacy. That this is a question of principle — either we assert civilian supremacy or army supremacy will get established. A serious debate took place with different political parties and ultimately, I acted because the other major political party in the government besides the Maoists — the United Marxist-Leninists — agreed to take action against Katawal. It is only then that I asked some questions of the army chief and tried to take action against him.
Who were the UML leaders who agreed with this?
Top central leaders like Jhalanath Khanal, Ishwar Pokharel and Bam Dev Gautam agreed that Katawal is always trying to challenge the elected government and that this will create a very bad situation in the coming days and therefore we should take some action. And when UML leadership agreed, I also discussed with the leadership of the Madhesi Forum (MJF). They too agreed to go ahead. Today, the MJF is sticking to its position but the UML reversed itself later on.
In the cabinet, when it became clear that UML was no longer on board, why did you feel it necessary to go ahead with the dismissal, knowing it would trigger a major crisis?
Because it is a question of principle, it is a question of making history in this country. If we surrender to this army chief or to army supremacy, this will create a very big problem in coming days. Therefore, we preferred to stand firmly. Even if I should have to resign from the government, I must establish civilian supremacy in Nepal.
So you were looking at the experience of Pakistan?
Exactly, we discussed here what happened in Pakistan, and how in India, civilian supremacy has been established from 1947 up to this time.
And that is the model you wanted to follow for Nepal?
Exactly, I discussed this question with different political leaders, that we have to learn from the experience of India in this issue, not Pakistan.But India went along with President Ram Baran Yadav’s decision to rescind the cabinet order and reinstate the general.
Did that disappoint you?
Well, we expected that India would take a consistent position in favour of civilian supremacy because of its own traditions and because it had supported the struggle for democracy here. In fact, I want to make it clear that before taking any action against Katawal, I told the Indian Ambassador, Rakesh Sood, that if it is possible, could you please send a message that I want to have a serious discussion on this issue and if either the foreign secretary or some other senior person can come here to talk. We knew some confusion is there between the Maoist-led government and India on this question. I wanted to settle this issue through interaction and discussion with high-level officials from Delhi. But unfortunately, the ambassador informed me that this cannot happen now because the election campaign is going on, that nobody is there, that it is very difficult.
So you wanted the Indian leadership to be on board before you took action against Katawal?
Exactly.But they say you promised you would not act without wide consultations, and that you didn’t stick to that assurance. Let me clarify. When the question of this army chief was in debate, right from the beginning of the recruitment issue last December, I tried to consult with different stakeholders, even with Indian officials, that this man is not comfortable with the peace process, not comfortable with civilian supremacy. And, therefore, I want to take some action against him. So the debate was there, just after the recruitment issue came. They said, yes, but it is not good to take action now, let him go in the natural way. But these negative things continued. Even then, before taking action, I had said I would consult with the different political parties. And there were 15 days of consultations.
Some people say the change in the UML’s position was the result of Indian pressure. Do you agree?
That would be going too far. Inside UML there was a heavy pressure for the leadership and maybe some sorts of pressure from Delhi also.
The media is speculating that the Maoists had reached out to Lt. General Kul Bahadur Khadka, that you wanted him as army chief because of some understanding. What is the truth?
All these rumours are baseless and completely wrong. We see no difference between Khadka or Chattra Man Singh Gurung or other generals. Our concern is with Katawal, who is acting against civilian supremacy. And we tried to convince other political parties, and even some members of the international community, that we don’t have any preference that Khadka should be the next chief. He is second in command and when we take action against the chief, the second will naturally come. But we did not have any hidden agenda or hidden interaction with Khadka.
And there was no plan to give him an extension, since has only a few weeks to go till retirement?
No. In fact, we made him acting chief. If we wanted to make him chief in that way for an extended period, we would not have made him only acting chief in our cabinet decision. So he was to be acting chief and we were open to discuss about the chief [after his retirement] — to either make Gurung or some other general. Some people think we are trying to manipulate Khadka in favour of the Maiosts. These baseless rumours are meant to confuse the people.
Why was the army recruitment issue so important for you? And what was the need to deny an extension to the eight brigadiers as recommended by Gen. Katawal? I am told many of them were highly competent, professional officers.
It was agreed that there should be no recruitment by the Nepal Army or Peoples Liberation Army until integration and rehabilitation of the PLA is complete. In fact, the UN wrote a letter to us saying the proposed army recruitment should be stopped as it violates the CPA. After this, we wrote to Katawal saying it should be stopped. But he defied us. As for the brigadiers, there have been so many instances in the past when an officer’s tenure ended and extension was not given. So this time too, in the case of the eight brigadiers who had reached the end of their tenure, we felt that to address change, to give opportunity to new officers, we should do this. And not only in the army but in the police, 10-11 officers were not given extension. If I don’t give opportunity to new officers, the old status quo will be maintained, it will not be consistent with the movement for change.
Some of your leaders have said that unless Katawal’s reinstatement is revoked, the Maoist bloc will not allow the Constituent Assembly to function. Wouldn’t that be an irresponsible thing to do?
We believe the president should correct his extraconstitutional action and we are not going to disrupt the CA functioning for the time being. Previously, the Nepali Congress had disturbed the functioning of parliament on the issue of the chief and in a counterattack we are also stopping it because NC taught us to do these kind of activities! But we are not going to have a continuous kind of programme like that, we will let the CA function and elect the government.
So you are not going to stand in the way?
No.
And can you rejoin government?
We will not be part of the government if the president does not correct his instruction on Katawal.
Could a possible compromise be restoring the status quo ante before the dismissal but with the CA passing a resolution firmly establishing the principle that the civilian government alone has the right to take decisions about the military and not the president?
On the issue of the principle, we will agree with that kind of proposal. But right now, in the process of forming the government, it is not possible to form an agreement on that line. We will be in the opposition in that situation.
Do you feel the Maoists will gain electorally in the future by staying in the opposition now?
We haven’t thought of the next election, we are thinking about civilian supremacy. If we go into opposition, it will mainly be for civilian supremacy. The Maoists struggled hard for a CA when others were against it, we fought hard for a Republic and now for civilian supremacy. People will ask why other parties are silent, how come only the Maoists are fighting for this. The image of the party has gone up in the hearts and minds of the people. This is our victory.

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COMMUNIST PARTY OF INDIA (MARXIST-LENINIST) Janashakti West Bengal State Committee Press Release on Nepal Revolution

Posted by ajadhind on August 19, 2008

To

The

Comrades of Communist Party of Nepal (Maoist)

Dear Comrades,

In the recent election of the Constituent Assembly there were three alternatives posed before the Nepalese people by different contesting parties – monarchy to be retained as it was, a constitutional monarchy with the king as figurehead and total abolition of monarchy to advance towards a democratic republic. Overwhelming majority of the people of Nepal has given their verdict for abolition of monarchy and establishment of democratic republic. In this struggle the Communist Party of Nepal (Maoist) led the people of Nepal successfully. The West Bengal State Committee of the Communist Party of India (Marxist -Leninist) Janashakti feels it is our proletarian internationalist duty to greet you, felicitate you for this victorious achievement.

The CPN (Maoist) has shown the world that if armed struggle is judiciously combined with all other forms of struggle it can become a powerful weapon in the arsenal of the people. The CPN (Maoist) has once more proved that protracted peoples war can be fought only by relying upon the masses. The CPN (Maoist) started the armed struggle and also fought the constitnent assembly elections with a people’s charter. Basic aim of that charter is to free the people of Nepal from the clutches of imperialism and feudalism . Abolition of monarchy is a real advance, significant advance to that goal, but not the final victory. In this period of globalisation and absence of a socialist state, the people of Nepal under the leadership of the CPN (Maoist) will have to go through a prolonged, zig-zag path to achieve final victory.

We hope that CPN (Maoist) will lead the people of Nepal steadfastly to that victory and a people’s democratic Nepal will be the logical culmination of that battle fighting both neo- revisionism and `left’- adventurism.

We pledge that we as communists of a neighbouring country will always fight shoulder to shoulder against all imperialist conspiracies against the people of Nepal as well as the people of India. We shall fight against any imperialist effort to use Indian expansionism and it’s backpiper Indian revisionism against the people of Nepal. We extend our support to your effort to renegotiate the Indo-Nepal Treaty on the basis of equality and five principles of peaceful co-existence.

Glory to the victory of the people of Nepal.

Glory to the victory of the Communist Party of Nepal (Maoist).

Long live Proletarian Internationalism, the deadly enemy of imperialism and its globalisation.

With Comradely Greetings

Aloke Mukherjee

SECRETARY

ON BEHALF OF

WEST BENGAL STATE COMMITTEE

COMMUNIST PARTY OF INDIA (Marxist-Leninst)

Janashakti

State Committee Office : 4, D. P. Shasmal Road, Kolkata – 700 033

North Bengal Office : Com. Khokan Majumdar, Vill. Khemchi, P.O. Naxalbari, Dist. – Darjeeling

Phone : +91-9434052710

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Message to Chairman Prachanda and to the Communist Party of Nepal (Maoist)

Posted by ajadhind on August 19, 2008

Dear Comrades,

 

The news of the election of Chairman Prachanda by the Constituent Assembly as first Prime Minister of the Federal Democratic Republic of Nepal expands all over the world and provokes waves of enthusiasm among the revolutionaries and the progressive peoples. For the first time in their long and militant history, the peoples of Nepal have a Prime Minister worthy of their aspirations and sacrifices. The election of Chairman Prachanda is another important victory of the popular masses of Nepal, led by the Communist Party of Nepal (Maoist). Furthermore, it is once more proving the success of the combination of strategic firmness based on the revolutionary principles and flexible tactics based on the correct and concrete analysis of the concrete situation.

 

The election of Chairman Prachanda as first Prime Minister of the Federal Democratic Republic of Nepal is an event with international importance. It is a source of encouragement and inspiration for the struggling peoples of the world, who give life to new waves of active resistance and mass struggles of various forms all over the globe. The International Community of the Peoples now acquires a new fortress, gets stronger and has a concrete example of a country where the People imposed its Power through its protracted, resolute and heroic struggle. The vanguard of the Revolution now heads the government of Nepal, despite the combined efforts of imperialism and of local reactionaries to undermine the democratic process and to oppose the popular will.

 

Dear Comrades,

 

On behalf of the Communist Organization of Greece, on behalf of the many friends of the Nepalese People and of the Nepalese Revolution in Greece, we enthusiastically salute your new tactical victory and the hopeful developments in your country! We are aware of the new difficulties that you will face in this new phase of the course towards genuine democracy and People’s Power. However we are confident that, under the leadership of Chairman Prachanda and of the Communist Party of Nepal (Maoist), you will open new ways and you will serve in the best ways the interests of the Nepalese People and of the peoples of the world. Be sure that your Greek comrades and friends will fulfil their internationalist duty and will further develop their solidarity with the popular masses and the revolutionary leadership of the Federal Democratic Republic of Nepal!

 

Long live the International Community of the Peoples!

Long live the People, the Federal Democratic Republic and the Communist Party of Nepal (Maoist)!

Imperialism shall be defeated!

 

Athens, 15 August 2008

For the Leading Committee of the Communist Organization of Greece (KOE)

Rudi Rinaldi, Nikos Galanis, Christos Katsoulas

Posted in GREECE, NEPAL | Tagged: , , , , | Leave a Comment »

 
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