Revolution in South Asia

An Internationalist Info Project

Agrarian Revolution: Radical Cooperative Movements & Nepali People’s War

Posted by irisbright on November 24, 2008

nepaalThis interview originally appeared in Red Star #18 as ‘Co-operative movement within people’s war in Nepal’.

by Thakur Prasad Devkota

The historical initiation of the People’s war (PW) in Nepal brought drastic changes in social, cultural, economic and political aspects. In the international communist movement that initiation adds an important step to build and develop the ideology in communist international. This article is about the “co-operative movement within people’s war” in Nepal during the war period. When the CPN (Maoist) planned and proclaimed the “establishment the base area”, people and party cadre became aware of co-operatives. Co-operative management and mass-mobilization is the major part of the PW in Nepal. To manage the red army, war preparation, weapon management, war-wounded treatment, feeding, clothing etc. were the major tasks of the base area. The major works to do in this area were:

1. Service and Production

2. Management

3. Construction and

4. Security.

To meet these challenges without the mobilization of the people was not possible. Therefore, to meet these challenges, CPN (Maoist) planned to organize and mobilize the people collectively.

After declaration of the base area, through construction and production, Party decided to form different departments to fulfil the needs of the people and the war. Like the department of agriculture and co-operative, public health, education, industry etc. were given priority. Thousands of great martyrs sacrificed themselves for the liberation of the people and the nation. The great people’s war brought a great change in Nepalese society, culture and economics and, politics. Within the PW, party planned for the socio-economic development, construction, and fulfillment of people’s requirement. Preliminary needs of the base areas were management, construction and security. To fulfill the needs, the party built many of the organizational structures in the rural areas.

The important things done are mass-mobilization in a greater scale, formation of co-operative and commune as the experiments and the bases for communism, construction of infra structure like roads and hospitals, establishment of co-operatives, agro-farm etc. On the basis of the above mentioned things, People’s Liberation Army (PLA) was formed for the security of the people and the base area. Now a days, the reactionaries are raising questions to dissolve PLA, co-operatives and communes made and established in the base area.

After declaration of emergency by the reactionary government, in December 2001, the importance of the co-operatives mostly increased to combat against reactionary army also. The initiation of commune and co-operative in the rural area is the embryo of the communist society. Therefore, in this article I’m going to explain about co-operative under the people’s government during the war period.

Theoretically, the co-operative is the first step to reach to the socialism and communism. It played an important role in socio-economic transformation. Theoretically and practically, it was divided in to three categories:

1) Labour co-operatives

2) Semi-social co-operatives

3) Social co-operatives

That is the step wise division of the co-operative development process. At the time of PW, we applied all types of cooperatives. Nowadays, some of the cooperatives are progressing in a lucrative ways. We can see these types of co-operatives in rural areas of the base area.

However, we can divide the co-operatives, economically, in the following way:

1) Financial co-operatives e.g. small saving & credit co-operative bank, co-operative bank etc.

2) Consumer/service co-operative e.g. marketing co-operative, community/co-operative school, community/co-operative hospital etc.

3) Production co-operative e.g. agriculture production co-operatives, industrial co-operative, construction co-operatives etc.

All these types of co-operatives were and are in practice in base areas. We gave emphasis in the production co-operative for the independent economy. To support the production, the other type of co-operative also established. Not only co-operatives we introduced and developed, but also the new technology we used increased in production. We established the co-operative system connecting with the daily life of the people, mainly the peasants, which brought socio-economic change in peasantry life. To protect from the food scarcity in the base area, we started the production system to change those areas. The co-operative system helped in production, distribution and consumption. The materials and requirements were mostly fulfilled by co-operatives.

In the base area, we established the different types of co-operatives for the experiment. Mainly the models of the commune, social co-operative and semi-social co-operative were applied and they have been the important achievements of the PW in socio-economic sector. These are the most important things in the history of the Nepalese co-operative. Ideologically, it is the way of socialisation of the production to transfer the society and also the development of war economy in new model of revolution. In new democracy of 21stcentury, it adds the major concept in socio-economic field. The reactionary camp argues to dissolved or destroy the communes and co-operatives. The duty of revolutionary is to protect and enrich the achievement.

One of the war period structures for socio-economic development is co-operative. These helped in the mobilization of the people and organize them into co-operative frame. The main communes and the co-operatives are given below:

1) Juni commune (in Jajarkot district)

2) Balidan People’s commune (In Rukum)

3) Ajambari People’s commune (In Rolpa)

4) Jaljala People’s commune (In Rolpa)

And the social People’s co-operative are the following:

1) Tamali People’s co-operative

2) Mirul people’s co-operative

And other type of co-operative also practiced in rural area during the war period. Those co-operatives are the base of the communist society. Therefore, we can say that it carries ideological important for the revolutionary communist in worldwide.

In Nepalese co-operative movement, it is the strong blow to the reactionary’s co-operative sector. It leads the co-operative movement of the revolutionary socialist camp. It is the great challenge to the imperialist, capitalist and all the reactionaries of Nepal and the world. It is necessary to study about the socio-economic structure build within war period. Therefore, ideologically, we can conclude that in the field of socio-economic sector we practised and developed:

1) war economics i.e. production, management, conservation of bio-diversity, people’s banking etc.

2) planting and introducing the highly nourishing crops and minor uncultivated plant found in jungle.

3) Search and introduction of the indigenous knowledge of rural people

4) establishment of the co-operative system in working, production, transportation, distribution, and security etc.

5) establishment of the communes and co-operatives in base areas for the socio-economic transformation of the society.

6) Introduce and experiment the newly improved technology to developed the base area like improve seed, medicine, farming technology, treatment technology etc.

The other type of community welfare functions like community health, school etc.; the co-operative sector was introduced within peoples war. That adds a new concept in sociology and economics to develop the ideology. That gives a new and creative message to the world. Principally, we can say that it is an important property of the revolution. From this, we can get lessons about the war period communes and co-operatives and economy of the Peoples War.

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