Revolution in South Asia

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Archive for March, 2010

Indian Newspapers Spread Claims of Urban Maoist Menace

Posted by Ka Frank on March 18, 2010

Delhi Rally against Op Green Hunt, December 17, 2009

This article appeared in Tehelka on March 16, 2010.

The Maoists And Us

PK Vijayan, Asst. Prof., Dept. of English, Hindu College, Delhi University

Could the cry of “Maoist terrorists” be the Congress led UPA governmet’s equivalent of the cry of “Islamic terrorists” during the BJP led NDA government? — asks PK Vijaya

On 20th February, the Hindustan Times, reporting on the chargesheet produced by the Delhi Police against Kobad Ghandy, stated that Ghandy was alleged to have been in direct contact with GN Saibaba, a professor in Delhi University, and who is alleged to be in control of the CPI (Maoist)’s tactical counter offensive against Operation Greenhunt.

Reporting on the same chargesheet, on the same date, the Times of India reported the investigators’ claim that civil rights groups like the PUDR and PUCL were actively helping the Maoists to spread their base; while Mail Today stated that there was an active Maoist operation amongst Delhi University students, specifically identifying the Democratic Students Union (DSU). Elaborating on this same chargesheet report the next day, the HT adds that a prominent research scholar and a human rights activist have been specifically identified by Ghandy as Maoist leaders in the capital, although they are not named by the newspaper.

Interestingly, each of these details appears only in the particular newspaper mentioned, and not in any of the other papers: like the blind men and the elephant, it is as if each has ‘found’ something unique in the chargesheet, that characterises the contents of that document – but unlike the blind men in the story, who after all are each seeking to describe the same beast but end up describing only the part that they sense, these newspapers presumably all have access to the same ‘beast’ in its entirety (i.e., the chargesheet), but have chosen to report only on specific – but different – aspects of the extensive Maoist network that it alleges exists in Delhi. What, we may ask, is going on?

Very simply, if each newspaper reports on any one branch of this alleged Maoist network, each will have apparently reported something unique; further, each newspaper’s readership will have been made aware of one crucial way in which the Maoist ‘menace’ is apparently already in their neighbourhood, and spreading like a virus. But the total effect of all the reports is the imaging of a hydra, a Ravana, a many-headed monster conceived in the savage and distant tribal terrains of Jharkhand, Chhatisgarh and Orissa, and that is now slouching towards the safe cosmopolitan world of the NCR to be born. Read the rest of this entry »

Posted in India News | Leave a Comment »

UNMIN Claims It May Not Be Able to Stay in Nepal For Long

Posted by n3wday on March 18, 2010

This article was published in Telegraph Nepal on March 15, 2010.

UNMIN with limited mandate prefers to quit Nepal

The United Nations’ Political Mission in Nepal, UNMIN, which has been in controversy since its official arrival, 23 January 2007, for its presumed pro Maoist posture has threatened to pull out from Nepal.

Karin Landgren, the UNMIN Chief accompanied by some UNMIN officials held consultations with major political parties of Nepal, Sunday March 14, 2010, over matters pertaining to integration of Maoists’ militias, wherein it is reported that the UNMIN officials conveyed Nepali political actors that in the prevailing circumstances with little capacity to assist the peace process, the UNMIN cannot stay longer in Nepal.

The UNMIN representatives held the meeting at a five star hotel somewhere in Lalitpur wherein leaders like Krishna Prasad Sitaula of Nepali Congress, Ishwor Pokharel of United Marxist Leninists and Krishna Bahadur Mahara of Unified Maoists’ Party attended the meeting. Mr. Mahara had earlier claimed that, India-Nepal’s southern neighbor was not in favor of UNMIN’s presence in Nepal and that anti-UNMIN remarks were being made as per the diktats of India.

Samuel Tamrat- deputy head of UNMIN had directly asked the leaders during the meeting to provide alternative to UNMIN. But Tamart, as reported by the media, made it clear to the leaders that the UNMIN with its limited mandate cannot continue with its Nepal mission for long.

The local media here in Nepal, The Peoples’ Review English Weekly and The Jan Manch vernacular Weekly, to be precise in the year 2006, had claimed that it was Tamrat’s excessive hobnobbing with the leaders of Nepal and India during his fortnight stay in the region, encouraged the Nepali leaders to declare Nepal a secular State.


Posted in Nepal News | Leave a Comment »

Ben Peterson in New Zealand on Nepal Speaking Tour

Posted by n3wday on March 18, 2010

This article was published on Scoop Independent News.

Eyewitness to a Revolution in Nepal

Young Australian activist tours NZ recounting his experience of a peoples’ movement

In 2006, a peoples’ movement overthrew Nepal’s hated King Gyanendra and the oppressive monarchical structure. Today, the Nepalese people are striving to build a new and better society.

We in New Zealand now have a chance to find out more about what’s happening in Nepal. Ben Peterson, a young Australian activist who spent 4 ½ months in Nepal witnessing first hand the revolutionary struggle, will be on a speaking tour of New Zealand from 21-27 March.

Ben says of his experience: “When I was in Nepal I met amazing people, peasant farmers, workers, students, youth, and the elderly, all fighting for a democratic future. Everywhere I went there was a common desire for something better. They’re fighting to build a new Nepal free of poverty, oppression and discrimination by sex, caste or race.”

“It was mind blowing to see the level of popular engagement with politics,” says Peterson. “Every little village had a union office, or a party organization, or something. It was amazing to see real revolutionary changes happening before my eyes. They’re fighting to build a new Nepal free of poverty, oppression and discrimination by sex, caste or race.” Read the rest of this entry »

Posted in Nepal News | Leave a Comment »

India: Tribal People Defend Their Land from Steel Company

Posted by Ka Frank on March 17, 2010

This article appeared in the Peninsula Observer and the Financial Times on March 10, 2010.

“There are slogans on walls saying ‘Naxals come and save us’,” says Arundhati Roy, the writer and social activist. “People are begging them, ‘just come and train us’.”

India’s tribes pitted against corporations over land

Disputes over forcible purchases are raging across the nation, says Amy Kazmin.  First, the land surveyors came. Then the rumours spread through the villages: Tata, one of India’s biggest conglomerates, would build a steel mill in the district. Finally government officials came to ask the villagers in Lohandiguda in Chhattisgarh state, who are mainly illiterate farmers from the Gond tribe, to relinquish their fields for the promise of cash, jobs and a better future.

For Banga Ram, the 65-year-old patriarch of a large family, the request was absurd. “What will we do with the money?” he asked. “We have to do agriculture to feed these children.” But local officials were not taking No for an answer. Banga Ram was arrested. After he spent 13 days in jail, he says his sons signed away the land and accepted compensation.

In nearby Chindgaon village, Sundar Kashyap, who earns Rs10,000 ($219, €161, £146) a month working for the government animal husbandry department, says his bosses warned him of trouble if his younger brothers refused to sign over two of their five acres. They too signed.

Yet five years after Tata Steel announced its plans for the mill, the families of both men are still cultivating their ancestral fields. Officials are struggling to complete the contentious land acquisition, with 20 percent of the required 5,000 hectares still outstanding and a local civil rights lawyer threatening legal action against the process. “I am going to challenge it,” says Pratap Agrawal, an attorney in the nearby small town of Jagdalpur. Read the rest of this entry »

Posted in India Background, India News | Leave a Comment »

Nepal: UN Blames Reactionary Parties for Failure

Posted by n3wday on March 16, 2010

Lynn Pacoe

This article was published on Nepal News.

This statement was issued by the UN just before the Maoists decision to bring a “no confidence” vote against the current government.  It undermines some of the ideological justification for foreign intervention in Nepal by  India, whose intrigues have U.S. backing.

U.S. intervention includes the continuing (and completely unjustified) placement of the UCPNM on the U.S. “terrorist” watch list.

UNMIN being blamed to conceal the failures of political parties, claims top UN official

Visiting United Nations Under-Secretary-General for Political Affairs, B. Lynn Pascoe, has made it clear that the actual number of the Maoist People’s Liberation Army (PLA) combatants living in UN-monitored cantonments and other information on them can’t be shared. He also accused the political parties here of putting the blame on UNMIN in order to hide their own failures.

Referring to Nepal government’s request to UNMIN to provide information on Maoist combatants in the cantonments, Pascoe bluntly said that the actual number of Maoist combatants can’t be shared and it will remain a secret. He said the information on the combatants should be kept secret as per the understanding reached between the government and the Maoists and that UNMIN will honestly abide by it (the understanding).

Read the rest of this entry »

Posted in Nepal News | 3 Comments »

UCPNM Preparing for No Confidence Motion in UML-NC Government

Posted by n3wday on March 15, 2010

This article was published on Nepal News.

Maoists preparing to float no confidence motion against govt

The main opposition Unified CPN (Maoist) is preparing to challenge the Madhav Kumar-led government by tabling a no confidence motion against it at the parliament . The party is currently busy collecting signatures of its lawmakers to submit a proposal for a special session of legislature-parliament on Sunday.

Maoist chairman Pushpa Kamal Dahal including senior leaders of the party are present at the Maoist parliamentary party meeting being held in Singha Durbar where the signatures are being collected.

Concluding that the current government has failed to maintain law and order in the country and guarantee a timely constitution and successful conclusion of the peace process, the party is collecting signatures of its lawmakers to call a special House session where in the party is expected to float a vote of no confidence against the government. The party is preparing to register the proposal at the parliamentary secretariat today.

The Maoists hope that the vote of no confidence against the government will pave way for the formation of a Maoist-led “national unity” government the party has been calling for since quite some time.

As per the Interim Constitution, the special session of the parliament can be called if one fourth of the 601 member legislature-parliament signs the proposal to call a special House session. To call the special session the Maoists need the signatures of 152 lawmakers, a number it can easily garner.

Read the rest of this entry »

Posted in Nepal Background | Leave a Comment »

Just Published: Operation Green Hunt — India’s War on the People

Posted by n3wday on March 15, 2010

A collection of essays from Democracy and Class Struggle.

The book is 76 pages long and contains articles by Amit Bhattacharyya, Radha D’Souza, Satnam and Buta Singh and interviews with G.N Saibaba on Operation Green Hunt.

There is also the latest interview with Ganapathy General Secretary of CPI Maoist and interviews with Kisenji.

The book contains the full statement issued 14th February 2010 by the Co-ordination Committee of Revolutionary Communists of Britain on Solidarity with India’s Indigenous Tribes against Social Discrimination and International Mining Exploitation.

To buy a copy visit here :
http://www.alternativebookshop.com/BookDetails.php?bookid=1579

For Bulk orders of more than 5 copies e mail here:
nickglais@yahoo.co.uk

Posted in India Background, India News | Leave a Comment »

CPP-New People’s Army Opposes May Elections, Launches Successful Tactical Offensives

Posted by Ka Frank on March 15, 2010

The four articles that appear here–two commentaries on the elections and two reports on recent military victories over the Philippine Army–lay out the position of the Communist Party of the Philippines and its military arm, the NPA, on the upcoming national elections in May and their basic strategy to  “arouse, organize and mobilize the people in mass struggles and the armed struggle.” These articles and the CPP’s bimonthly newspaper, Ang Bayan, are available on the Philippine Revolution website.

“The NPA views elections under a reactionary state as a power struggle amongst various factions of the ruling classes. It neither participates nor can it decide the outcome of these elections. On the other hand, the NPA upholds that the genuine democratic elections that reflect the peoples’ choices take place among local organs of political power organized in revolutionary base areas in the countryside.”

Walk the talk
Chadli Molintas Command, NPA-Ilocos-Cordillera Region, March 10, 2010

Recent ridiculous allegations by the Armed Forces of the Philippines linking a presidential candidate and more than 50 politicians to the New People’s Army highlight once again the apalling ineptitude of the Arroyo regime’s propaganda and psywar machinery.

As proof, the AFP presented an intelligence report that listed the names of politicians supporting the NPA, and said a decision to support a presidential candidate in exchange for money was passed by the Communist Party of the Philippines during its anniversary meeting in barangay Aguid, Sagada, Mountain Province last December 28, 2009.

The depths from which the AFP dredges up data for its intelligence report is so murky and slimy that even its own officers are confused. The CPP anniversary is on the 26 of December, and no meeting to decide whom to endorse for president th ever took place last December in barangay Aguid or in any part of the Cordillera. Read the rest of this entry »

Posted in Philippines background, philippines news | Leave a Comment »

Bhattarai Says No to New Constitution Unless PLA Units Integrated into Nepal Army

Posted by Ka Frank on March 15, 2010

This article appeared in The Himalayan.

Bhattarai warns of conflict for 12-point breach

POKHARA: UCPN-Maoist vice chairman Dr Baburam Bhattarai said that the new constitution will not be promulgated before PLA combatants are integrated.

He was speaking briefly at the Pokhara Airport on Thursday. 

Bhattarai reasoned that the new constitution and peace process could not be accomplished without the integration of the PLA combatants.

He added that the qualified fighters should be integrated in bulk.

 Bhattarai accused some party leaders and Ministers for conspiring on the army integration and statute drafting processes. He warned of new conflict if the 12 point agreement is breached.

 However, the vice chairman said that there is no alternative to unity among the political parties.

He expressed his satisfaction over the performance of the High Level Political Mechanism. 

Slamming the preconditions for a Maoist-led government put forth by the CPN-UML, Bhattarai said that it can be discussed though it has no compulsion.

Posted in Nepal News | Leave a Comment »

Jed Brandt From Nepal: Images From International Women’s Day

Posted by onehundredflowers on March 14, 2010

These are Jed Brandt’s pictures from International Women’s Day in Kathmandu, Nepal, where women are playing a leading role in the revolutionary transformation of society. Photo credit: Jed Brandt

Read the rest of this entry »

Posted in Nepal News | Leave a Comment »

Nepali Congress Opposes New Government, Demands Dissolution of YCL

Posted by n3wday on March 13, 2010

YCL Training

This article was published on eKantipur.com.

Change of guard not necessary: NC Spokesperson

Nepali Congress (NC) spokesperson Arjun Narsingh KC said on Thursday that  his party is not in favour of changing  government. “We don’t believe that a new government will perform better than this one,” said KC.  The incumbent government is capable of bringing in new dimensions in the nation if all the political parties agreed to work together, the NC leader said.

Speaking at the 15th general convention of Save The Environment of Nepal in Chandanighapur of Rautahat district today, KC urged all the political parties to focus on constitution drafting process rather than indulging in the game of forming and toppling government. He remarked that a new government under the leadership of Maoist can not even be imagined unless they dissolve YCL and their arms and combatants are managed

While accusing the Maoists of dilly-dallying in the army integration process, which he said was against the line of commitments made in the peace accord, the NC spokesperson claimed that the Maoists are driven by the strategy to capture the state power. KC also expressed his dissatisfaction over the UNMIN’s role in the Nepal’s peace process.

Posted in Nepal News | 2 Comments »

Nepal Army Patrol Kills 3 Women Out Gathering Firewood

Posted by n3wday on March 13, 2010

This article was published on eKantipur.com.

Three women dead when NA patrol opens fire

Three women lost their lives when a patrol team of the Nepal Army (NA) shot them at Gajapani, Hariharpur-2 on Thursday. The deceased has been identified as Devisara BK, 35, Amrita BK, 33, and Chandrakala BK, 12.  They had gone to fetch fire-woods at the conservation area when the NA personnel shot them.

Posted in Nepal News | Leave a Comment »

Prachanda: Talking Revolt over Constitution Deadline

Posted by n3wday on March 13, 2010

This article was published in the Himalayan Times.

Dahal hits out at rotten pumpkin

JAJARKOT: UCPN-Maoist chairman Puspa Kamal Dahal ‘Prachanda’ today said that a “third people’s movement” will be launched under his party’s leadership if a new constitution is not had within the deadline of May 28.

Prachanda was addressing a mass meeting organised by the UCPN-Maoist-Jajarkot in the headquarters Khalanga. Calling the incumbent government a “rotten pumpkin,” he said that the present coalition had lost all moral grounds to stay in office, and, as such, people have to throw it out forcefully. He also alleged that “foreign forces” hatched conspiracies to make the Maoist-led government a failure.

Coming down heavily on the present government, Prachanda said it was an utter failure as it was formed by “losers” in the Constituent Assembly and “puppets of foreign power centres.” Commenting on the functioning of the “rainbow coalition,” he accused the government of not being serious about rising insecurity and violence in the country, while only trying to lengthen its tenure.

He said that though the CPN-UML and the Nepali Congress, the key partners in the coalition, had been trying to provoke Nepali Army against the Maoists, the army will never be tempted.

Posted in Nepal News | Leave a Comment »

Indian Media Unearths Alleged “Maoist Operation” in Delhi

Posted by Ka Frank on March 12, 2010

Pro-government newspapers are claiming that Maoist leader Kobad Ghandy has identified professors, student groups and rights organisations as part of a sinister "Maoist operation" in Delhi.

This article appeared in Tehelka.

The Maoists and Us

Could the cry of “Maoist terrorists” be the Congress led UPA governmet’s equivalent of the cry of “Islamic terrorists” during the BJP led NDA government? — asks PK Vijayan, Assistant Professor of English, Hindu College, Delhi University

On 20th February, the Hindustan Times, reporting on the charge sheet produced by the Delhi Police against Kobad Ghandy, stated that Ghandy was alleged to have been in direct contact with GN Saibaba, a professor in Delhi University, and who is alleged to be in control of the CPI (Maoist)’s tactical counter offensive against Operation Greenhunt.

Reporting on the same charge sheet, on the same date, the Times of India reported the investigators’ claim that civil rights groups like the PUDR and PUCL were actively helping the Maoists to spread their base; while Mail Today stated that there was an active Maoist operation amongst Delhi University students, specifically identifying the Democratic Students Union (DSU).

Elaborating on this same charge sheet report the next day, the HT adds that a prominent research scholar and a human rights activist have been specifically identified by Ghandy as Maoist leaders in the capital, although they are not named by the newspaper. Interestingly, each of these details appears only in the particular newspaper mentioned, and not in any of the other papers: like the blind men and the elephant, it is as if each has ‘found’ something unique in the charge sheet, that characterises the contents of that document – but unlike the blind men in the story, who after all are each seeking to describe the same beast but end up describing only the part that they sense, these newspapers presumably all have access to the same ‘beast’ in its entirety (i.e., the charge sheet), but have chosen to report only on specific – but different – aspects of the extensive Maoist network that it alleges exists in Delhi. What, we may ask, is going on?

Very simply, if each newspaper reports on any one branch of this alleged Maoist network, each will have apparently reported something unique; further, each newspaper’s readership will have been made aware of one crucial way in which the Maoist ‘menace’ is apparently already in their neighbourhood, and spreading like a virus.

But the total effect of all the reports is the imaging of a hydra, a Ravana, a many-headed monster conceived in the savage and distant tribal terrains of Jharkhand, Chhatisgarh and Orissa, and that is now slouching towards the safe cosmopolitan world of the NCR to be born. Read the rest of this entry »

Posted in India News | 1 Comment »

West Bengal: Police Fail to Come Up With Evidence to Back Up Charges against Chhatradhar Mahato

Posted by Ka Frank on March 12, 2010

This article appeared in India Today on March 9, 2010.

Lalgarh leader gets bail in 26 cases

Kolkata: Six months after Maoist-backed People’s Committee Against Police Atrocities (PCAPA) leader Chhatradhar Mahato was arrested by the West Bengal Police, he has got bail in 26 of the 29 cases against him.

He was arrested on September 26 during an agitation against police atrocities in Lalgargh and was booked under the Unlawful Activities Prevention Act (UAPA). After framing charges, including murder, arson and threat to national security against him, the police failed to back the charges with evidence.

Defence counsel Kaushik Sinha said Mahato had managed to get bail in 13 cases on December 15. The additional chief judicial magistrate of Jhargram court refused to take note of the chargesheet submitted in a case pertaining to sedition on technical grounds. “We managed to secure bail for him in 13 other cases when he was produced in court recently. His bail in most of the cases proved he was framed by the police. The court discharged him in 26 cases,” Sinha said.

Association for Protection of Democratic Rights leader Sujato Bhadra said: “Out of 29 cases against Mahato, only three – including the UAPA charge – is pending against him. We are planning to move high court in the three remaining cases.” It is very unfortunate that as he kept getting bail in cases, the investigators slapped additional charges against him to keep him in custody,”he added. Read the rest of this entry »

Posted in India News | 1 Comment »