By a commentator for Tjen Folket Media.
All the views in this article belongs to the commentator, and only the commentator.
From 1996 to 2006, a people’s war raged across the Himalayan mountain range, both in cities and the countryside, where the red flag was raised over even the highest mountaintops. The people took to arms and built the new power, which at the people’s war’s peak comprised 80% of Nepal. Next month, it will have been thirteen years since the peace agreement was signed, where the people’s war was liquidated by its own leadership. The masses in Nepal are today just as poor and subjugated by imperialism and bureaucracy capitalism as they were before the people’s war. But again the people raise themselves, and a number of struggles and armed actions have rocked the country in the past year.
The party that stands behind the actions, earlier known as the Communist Party of Nepal – Maoist, has over the course of the year dropped “Maoist” from the name, something that might indicate a reconstitution of the party. The Communist Party of Nepal must not be mistaken for the rotten revisionist party that currently holds power in Nepal today, and which claims the same name.
In the last year, a number of telephone towers owned by the company Ncell have been bombed and set aflame. Ncell is owned by the Swedish company Telia. According to bourgeois media in Nepal, the communist party is responsible for the actions. The cause was that Ncell has avoided paying taxes while they have profited greatly from their business in Nepal.
On March 12 this year, the bureaucracy-capitalist state announced the exile of the communist party. This came after a year of hard repression, where hundreds of cadres were arrested.
As a response to the exile, the party announced a general strike, where schools, shops, and banks were held closed. Already in May, another general strike was announced when the state’s forces were to have killed several of the party’s cadres.
In the start of June, 25 armed cadres were to have occupied a police station in the countryside of Chheskam. Police forces evacuated when they received a message that cadres were observed on their way to the region, but police and military have later taken back control of the rural area.
On June 8, police raided the locale of a women’s group in the district of Kaski, where the party was said to have held a meeting. 18 cadres were arrested, among them the leader of the party’s student front. The fact that a local women’s group rented the locale and hid the members of the communist party, all while many of them went on strike in support of the party, shows that it is a party with strong roots among the masses.
In late June, a district leader of the party was killed by police in what was reported to have been an exchange of fire. In protest, yet another nation-wide general strike was announced, where large markets, academic institutions, and other companies were held closed in several parts of the country.
July was an especially tumultuous month for the country’s rulers. In the course of the month, there were bombing attacks and several firefights between police and military party cadres, with casualties on both sides. Three government buildings were also razed to the ground.
In the same month, roughly 70,000 square meters of land were also occupied and distributed among peasants. The land occupation was to have been carried out in the name of Tharuwan Autonomous Province Bardagoriya People’s Council Nepal. To mark this occasion, the red flag was raised over the occupied region. After the revisionist party liquidated the revolution and became a part of the bourgeois state apparatus, the land reform that was a part of the New Democratic program of the people’s war was never carried out. But once again, there appears to be hope for Nepal’s many peasants.
Netra Bikram Chand, known as Biplav, is the leader of the party. He has his background from the revisionist party that led the people’s war that today has power in the country. Even if Biplav had disagreements with Prachanda (the leader of the revisionist party) in the peace process, what they had in common was that they both stood for a line that smelted together the people’s army with the reactionary state’s army. Something that meant the disarming of the masses of people.
While Prachanda’s incentive was a betrayal against the people, there are indications that Biplav’s position was borne of naivety. Since then, it appears that there have been changes in Biplav’s political line, but to our current knowledge, there has been no substantial self-criticism or exhaustive rectification campaigns.
After years and years of betrayals from revisionists and right-liquidationists that now rule the country, these new developments are a fresh breath of air. But if the revolution is to finally win in Nepal, it demands a correct political-ideological line as a guiding thought. Time will only tell whether or not the masses in Nepal will once again be let down. The international communist movement follows these developments with excitement.