Monday, July 31, 2006

Gauri Lankesh

"Saketh Rajan(alias prem) was not just a guy carrying a gun running around the forest fighting for the people. He was one of the most brilliant minds this state has ever produced"

- Gauri Lankesh(Respected Journalist,successful filmmaker,feminist and editor of Lankesh Patrika- Karnataka's most popular kannada magazine. )

Comrade Saketh Rajan
Did you know that Comrade Saketh Rajan was not only the
state secretary of the CPI(Maoist) in Karnataka ,but was also
an award winning photographer !

That he had three post-graduate degrees !

That when he secured the first rank in his course and was to receive the award and certificate from the Minister Vidya Charan Shukla. He proceeded to the dais. But, without receiving the certificate from the Minister, nor even shaking hands with him, he had walked off the dais, as a show of his anger against the establishment

Read more about Karnataka's Immortal Son of the Soil
- Comrade Saketh Rajan below

We remember Comrade Saketh Rajan thus we make him Immortal

How Comrade Saketh Rajan was killed in Treachery

I am proud of you my Son ! - Interview with Comrade Saketh Rajan's mother

Comrade Saketh Rajan's dedication to his wife Comrade Raji

Given below is the preface of Volume II of Comrade Saketh Rajan's
path breaking study into the History of Karnataka.
He dedicates it to his martyred wife Comrade Raji.


In the preface to Volume I of Making history , it was said that
this book had more than just one author.

As Volume II prepares for print I am compelled to tell about one
such author who remained anonymous.

Such a revelation should have been a matter of joy. But the circumstances
brim with emotions of an opposite kind.

Com Raji in the Nagar fort

Raji,as she was known to those who were close to her,was killed
by police on 20 March 2001 in the forest of Kothapalli in Vishakapatnam
district of Andhra Pradesh.

She was captured that afternoon by a 20 member detachment of the Special
Task Force, tortured for more than four hours and finally shot from the
back of her head.

There were two children who saw all of this from behind a bush.
They were dumbfounded by the barbarity.They could not eat for the
next three days.But when they finally spoke, they said one thing of her.

It was remarkable.She had stood her ground.As she was
mauled ,this soft spoken woman in her forties was outrageously defiant.
She hailed the revolution from her dying lips.

Raji had passed her test as a revolutionary in flying red.
She defied her assasins to live
beyond them.

The volumes of Making History are indebted to this coffee
complexioned and short statured,yet,abundantly tall and graceful heroine of the oppressed.

Raji has her modest place in the writing as well as in the making of history.
She was the first to lend her patient ear to the pages of the first and second volumes.

As the parts were written out ,she would hear them read.It did not matter to her if
it was late on a wintry nigh. Or, if it was in the epicentre of a sultry
summer's afternoon.She would have her senses glued,Then she would make her observations.

Raise questions or pose her points.That way she left her imprint on these pages.
Noiselessly and unadvertised.

The production of Volume I owes a lot to her.
Ugh! DRab office work.This is how many
would dismiss it.But she was perennially enthusiastic.
She set the pages on the computer

She doctored the viral infections and tailored the illustrations
to precision. As the book rolled out of the press and the jacket neatly
tucked in its glistening sleeves.
Raji had graduated as a DTP beautician.

Volume II had caught her imagination. The armed struggle waged by
the people of Karnataka in the early decades of the nineteenth century
were a point she would often have me ponder about.We could not resist the contagion.We decided to relive these precious moments from
our popular past.We caught the bus to Nagar. There we saw what
was left of the famous fortress that served as a flash point for the historic Nagar peasent insurgency.

A few months later we squeezed some time for Nandagad.We spoke to
the people about Sangolli Rayanna.As we talked with the toilers,
they gave us accounts, pointed about his
escapades,guided us around and treated us to food in their huts.

Raji spotted the smouldering fire that burnt in their hearts.

I asked her if Rayanna kindled something deep inside them.
She blew away decades of ash
with her warm breath.Then, pointing to the red glow of the embers,
she said that new generations of those very same masses
were stirring to re-enact them across the
forests and plains of Nandagad and Nagar.

As I shook hands with her in January 2001, it was the last I saw of her.
She was in olive green her rucksack was firmly strapped onto her back.In
it she had empty tapes,empty notebooks and unexposed film.
She carried no firearm.She was a non-combatant.

Comrade Rajeshwari held out her clenched fist in farewell.

There are two facts about the past and future of Indian
history which the Kannada and Telgu nations share among them.
To unravel best the prospect
of the burgeois democratic revolution,one has to venture into
Karnataka's past.

In the period of Haider and Tipu and in their kingdom of Mysore,
the Indian high road to the old democratic revolution has been laid.
One could already catch a glimpse of the maturation of conditions,
of an imminent storm against the system of

Later in Nagar and around Nandagad the masses stormed those very
gates of heaven.They illustrated through popular war against
feudalism and colonialism that they desired democracy and liberation.
These were simmering embers that Raji had deftly picked up
and placed in the first and second volumes of Making History.

But she aimed for more.She desired to relive the past only so as to enact
the future.She desired that it was not enough just to see the prospect of the burgeois democractic revolution.Her intellect was not insipid.
She wanted to see and share the living
popular experience of the proletarian democratic revolution.

If Karnataka's past demonstrated the possibility of the old
democratic revolution,the people's war raging in Andhra Pradesh
brilliantly lit up the prospect of the new democratic revolution.

Raji had seen the past.She wanted to see the future.She chose to visit
the villages of Andhra Pradesh were new democratic people's power was being forged.She wanted to study it,record it and broadcast its prowess among
the masses of Karnataka.

She interviewed scores of people.She recorded revolutionary songs.
She made copious notes of what she had read and heard.She took photographs of the oppressed adivasis and of their hope the young guerilla fighters in green.

On March 20 , she sat beneath a tree. She was pouring over her diaries.Shots
rang out.She hid in the thicked.But they got their filthy hands on her.Then
it was short work.Bullets burnt through her brains.Blood was on her cheek.It
oozed from her mouth.She could not rise to protect her notebooks.Raji rested on the
forest floor like a carefree child.Her curls were disheveled.They would remain
unkempt forever.

Today she is in deep sleep.

Volume II of Making History is dedicated to her.But as this volume is read , the sleeping Rajeshwari will awaken her readers.In her we catch a glimpse of the
glorious past.But not just that .She comprehensively epitomizes the future
too.As the revolution rages across our land,the fascist rulers and their state will discover more and more than the memories of the dead are not as easily erased from the hearts and minds of the living.
That is what history - the history of class struggle,is also about.

Raji learned this lesson well.She reminds us of it always,only because she
generously gave away the one most precious thing she had when
it was asked of her- her pulsating life- for the cause of the oppressed.


1 November 2002

Note- Saki was comrade Saketh Rajan's pen name.
The image at the beginging of this post is the original picture
of Comrade Raji that appeared in the book.The scan has affected
the image quality.

Making History - By Saketh Rajan

Front Cover of Making History - Volume II by Saki

Based on a wide range of primary and secondary sources this book makes
an analytical narrative of the development of Karnataka history
from the time of British conquest of Karnatka in 1799 till the War
of Independence in 1857.

Contrary to biased history writing,it makes a comprehensive
and objective presentation of the people's history of
Karnataka,adopting the mathodology of Historical Materialism.

Back Cover of Making History - Volume II by Saki

Comrade Saketh Rajan - Author of the path breaking book

Sold Out

Comrades a few months back I came to know that
Comrade Saketh Rajan's books have been SOLD OUT !
Both volume 1 and 2 have gone out of stock !

To check if that was true,I made the round of several bookstores
based in bangalore like Sapna's , Gangarams and other smaller bookstores
and all of them revealed that they had gone out of stock.

This path breaking book written by Comrade Saketh Rajan is now
being taught in Universities in Karnataka !

As his books are devoured by readers young and old
throughout the world, a thousand Saketh Rajan's are all set to bloom.

Ripping up the rulebook

Ripping up the rulebook

Bilateral and unilateral deals are the new avatars of 'free trade' and guarantors of corporate rule.

July 27, 2006 09:45 AM

The Doha-round negotiations collapsed once again at the mini-ministerial in Geneva on July 23 2006. Martin Khor of Third World Network reports from Geneva that when asked whether the Doha round was dead or in intensive care, Kamal Nath, India's commerce minister, said it was somewhere between intensive care in hospital and the crematorium.

Peter Mandelson, the EU trade commissioner told the press after the suspension of World Trade Organisation (WTO) negotiations: "We have missed the last exit on the motorway."

The US, by refusing to reduce its agricultural subsidies, is being identified by all as being responsible for the collapse of talks. The US and its corporations were the driving force behind the two agreements of the Uruguay round that have had the biggest impact on the poor of the developing world. The Trade-Related Intellectual Property Rights (Trips) agreement has increased the cost of seeds and medicine by promoting monopolies.

Thousands of Indian farmers have committed suicide because of debts resulting from a new dependence on costly yet unreliable hybrids sold by Monsanto and its Indian partners.
And the Agreement on Agriculture (AoA) has destroyed the agricultural livelihoods of millions of peasants and the food security of the world's poor.

The willingness of the US to allow the Doha-round negotiations to grind to a halt by showing inflexibility in offering to reduce distorting farm subsidies in exchange for increased market access is not because agricultural market access is no longer of interest to the US.

The US does not have to give up anything multilaterally because it is getting market access bilaterally, often with "non-agreements" such as the US-India Knowledge Initiative in Agriculture, which is promoting GMOs, agricultural imports and the entry of Wal-Mart into Indian retail. Monsanto, Wal-Mart and ADM are on the board of the US-India initiative.

US aid is interfering directly in India's GM policies, and has financed the push to commercialise Bt Brinjal, which would be the first GM food crop approved for large-scale commercial trials and seed production in India.

While India's bio-safety assessment framework has no reference to the unscientific "substantial equivalence" principle (a principle promoted in the US to avoid looking for the unique biological impacts of GM foods), the "substantial equivalence" is the basis of Bt Brinjal data submitted by Monsanto-Mahyco to the genetic engineering approval committee (GEAC), the statutory body for granting approvals for GMOs. The virus of bio-safety deregulation is thus being subtly introduced into India. GMOs are spreading bilaterally without the WTO, which had to be used against Europe in the US-EU GMO dispute.

The US biotech agenda is also being internalised into India's agricultural policy. The Planning Commission, India's highest planning body, headed by Montek Singh Ahluwalia, is appointing a non-resident, the US-based Dr Deshpal Verma, professor of genetics and biotechnology at Ohio, to head a cell to promote GMOs in agriculture and increase the role of global corporations such as Monsanto in the farm sector. Bilateral deals are thus mutating into unilateral policies in a process referred to as "autonomous liberalisation."

US agribusinesses such as Cargill and ADM no longer need the WTO's market access rules to capture India's markets. As part of the Bush-Singh agreement, India has been influenced to import wheat, even though there was enough wheat produced in India. Domestic markets, too, have been captured by multinationals such as Cargill, Canagra, Lever and ITC.

India's food security is being systematically dismantled. Food prices have increased dramatically, and with them, hunger and malnutrition. While being presented as an economic power and the new poster child of globalisation, India now is the home to a third of the world's malnourished children. And the problem of hunger will grow as peasants are pushed off the land and food prices increase.

Meanwhile, corporations such as Wal-Mart are trying to grab India's retail market, an informal sector employing more than 200 million people. Wal-Mart is trying to find a way to capture this large market, and has succeeded in getting foreign direct investment (FDI) pushed through in retail. It is also trying to partner up with Reliance Industry Ltd (RIL), which is planning to build new superstores in 784 Indian towns and 1,600 farm supply hubs, and to move the produce with a 40-plane air cargo fleet.

The Reliance group has also become the largest land-grabber in India, using governments to forcibly acquire hundreds of thousands of acres of fertile farmland at a thousandth of the market price. These are the subsidies Wal-Mart is seeking through partnerships. And Walmart does not need a Gats service agreement to take over retail services in India: bilateral and unilateral policies are opening up India's markets for Wal-Mart.

So, the WTO may be on life support, but "free trade" is alive and kicking. Bilateral and unilateral initiatives are the new avatars of globalisation and free trade. And it is these avatars we must challenge if we are to stop corporate rule, while the WTO hovers between intensive care and the crematorium.


Munltinational Biotech Companies in Chattisgarh go on looting spree

"Jatropha Bio-Piracy" : Appeal from Chhattisgarh Jaiv Suraksha Manch

Chhattisgarh has again been attacked by a multinational company. You must be remembering two years back Syngenta an Swiss MNC tried to snatch the germplasm of twenty thousand rice varieties of Chhattisgarh.
These were the varieties collected by Dr.R H Richharia during his work at MP Rice Research Institute. Those varieties are kept with Indira Gandhi Agriculture University, Raipur. Luckily the information leaked out before finalization of the deal.

The people of Chhattisgarh resisted strongly against the back door entry of the MNC and expressed their mandate in favor of community rights on all the bio-resources and related knowledge of the Chhattisgarh . The university and state government should have taken lesson, but it is evident that neither of them took the feelings of People of Chhattisgarh seriously.

This time germplasm of 18 local varieties of Jatropha have been stolen. These varieties are considered to have high oil content and disease and drought resistance qualities.
High quality Pendra variety has also been stolen. (Many variants of Jatropha are wildly found in some forests of Chhattisgarh. The variety found in Pendra area of Chhattisgarh is considered to be of high quality.) A multinational company known as D-one has received the germplasm and said to have cultivated it in a form house near Raipur taken on lease by the MNC.

One interesting thing is that in both the cases of bio-piracy (The syngenta and the D-One) the medium for the robbery has been IGKVV. The IGKVV has failed to protect the bio-resources of Chhattisgarh to which it is presumed to be custodian.

According to news paper report (Dainik Bhaskar, 17th Jan.06) the university had appointed an investigation team to find out the details of the case. The team led by Dr.ARRS Shastri found Dr. Sunil Puri of IGKVV guilty and the university charge sheeted Dr.Puri for the same.

Meanwhile Dr.Puri has joined the same MNC establishment in Coimbatore. Surprisingly te university administration tried its best to hide the issue from the eyes of the public. The university’s attitude was of a criminal negligence. Such negligence to the public property by a public sector institution is very serious.

The issue has again opened the issue of concern of the people of Chhattigarh about the security of their bio-resources kept in the custody of the IGKVV and other centralized structures. The university has been hiding the information on seeds of Chhattisgarh from public in the name of official secrecy but it is leaking the information and the germplasm to MNCs time and again.

Apart from breach of trust to the nation this is also violation of the rights of the people of Chhattisgarh. We fear that the greatest threat to the bio-resources of Chhattisgarh is from the IGKVV and such other structures which have centralized control on the bio-resources.

We would like to remind the concept of decentralized research, extension and germplasm accessions given by Dr.RH Richharia to tackle such act of both theft and subsequent negligence. The role of the university in stopping the information about the farmer's seed to come in public domain has always been under suspicion and can be easily related to such acts of bio-piracy. The university has kept Dr.Richharia’s work "Encyclopedia of Rice" unpublished. The university is yet to answer these questions to the public.

The negligence of the serious issues at university and State government level can also be viewed in the matter that the report of the Bagai Committee commissioned to investigate the Syngenta deal, has yet not been made public after almost three years of the incidence.

We appeal all friends to protest against such criminal act and demand for an enquiry and action against the guilty persons and the MNCs.

We demand

· Criminal case be filed against the MNC and the scientist involved.

· The Bagai committee report on Syngenta issue investigation be made public.

· Dr. Richharia’s work "Encyclopedia of Rice" be published and bring the information on bio-resources under control of the university in public domain.

Rest of the Article

Saturday, July 29, 2006

Dylan Thomas

Dylan Thomas

Do not go gentle into that good night
Rage, rage, against the fading of the light.
- Dylan Thomas

P Rajan - A Naxalite Sympathiser devoured by Khaki Rakshashas

To commomerate" Martyrs week " this blog will carry profiles and the struggles of our comrades and sympathizers for the whole of this week.

P.Rajan - Tale of a naxalite sympathiser who was devoured by Khaki Rakshashas.(Demonic Police Forces)

Rajan was a student of REC Calicut during the emergency period. In the 1970's the Naxalite movement had become very strong in north kerala. Almost any idealistic, young man/woman in those days were attracted to that ideology.

College hostels were probably full of sympathizers to the "cause". It is generally accepted that Rajan was not in the movement but likely was a sympathizer but so were thousands of others. However, what allegedly bought him to the attention of police was a play which he acted/directed (i am not sure about the specifics) during a college festival which made fun of a minister in the kerala cabinet.

After he was tortured, murdered and burned (allegedly) in the kakkyam police camp, the government and the police steadfastly maintained that he was never even taken into custody.

Prof Eachara Warrior, Rajan's father, could not even approach the courts during emergency as "habeus corpus" was suspended. After emergency was lifted, he filed a case against the government which ultimately led to a judgement by the high court against the government. karunakaran who was the home minister at the time of the murder (and chief minister when the judgement came out) had to resign.

Jayaram Padikkal IPS,the man in charge of the camp and Pulikkodan Narayanan, the SI who tortured and killed Rajan were prosecuted but never rally paid for their crimes. Rajan's mother, who was mentally ill, was never told about his murder. She lived for more than 25 years in the fond hope that her only son will one day return.

Even today, exactly what happened to Rajan is a mystery. Was he burned with sugar (to ensure that not even burns will be left behind) or dumped in a dam? Will the perpetrators ever confess? I hope some one will tell the true story like the retired constable who confessed to the killing of Vargheese so that the old man will gain some peace of mind in the twilight of his life.

I once had the privilege of hearing Prof Eachara Warrior speak about his experience. A humble man, he spoke simply but movingly about his futile attempts to get his boy back. As he spoke, I tried to imagine his sufferings but failed miserably. He has written a small book on his experience.

The incident should remind us of the excesses that a supremely powerful government can commit if the "checks and balances" are removed. During emergency, trains ran on time, governent service was efficient, civil servants were afraid to strike but personal liberty, "due proces" and fundamental human rights were trampled upon. In the quest for achieving the former nobody should have to give up the latter.


Comrades even as we remember P.Rajan's sacrifice there are many more Rajans being
devoured under the protection of the draconianChattishgarh Public Security Actby the CRPF Rakshashas in Chattishgarh.
They even have a name for it and it's called "Salwa Judum".

And Greyhound Rakshashas are devouring young and old naxalite sympathisers
in Andhra Pradesh.

Nothing much has changed in all these years since the emergencies.
Naxalite sympathisers still continue to disappear at night and
mysteriously reappear in jungles where the Rakshashas claim
an encounter killing.

Generation now is all so excited about RTI (Right to information) Act.
They spend their faltu time sending SMS's exhorting and encouraging the
use of RTI to news channels.

I was wondering , that if I decided to file a RTI petition tommorow
will they inform us about the truth of what happened to 10,000 of our comrades(majority of them non-combatants) and how they were really
killed and why they disappeared,in the last 40 years ?

If it cannot
then the RTI is useless to me.

Related Links

Piravi(The Birth) a movie based on this incident

Memoirs of a father - A book written by Rajan's father Eachara Warrier- Download Now

Book Review - An Iron Harvest

Memories Of a Father - Professor T V Eachara Varier. Download in PDF format

Book Cover - P.Rajan as a child

Memories Of a Father

Which is denser-the pain of the son
at the death of his father or the pain
of the father at the death of his son?

From the tears of a father's pen comes an eloquent, moving and
remarkable statement on cruelty, courage, and enduring hope.
Professor Eachara Varier describes his desperate and ultimately
unsuccessful attempts to get his son out of a police camp where he is
taken one morning for no reason. The camp is a place where the
rules of life and death are very different to the rest of the world. It is
a place where a few officers have absolute power to decide who to
arrest, how to arrest them, how to torture them, when to kill them,
and how to dispose of their dead bodies. Above them are the senior
police officers, politicians and bureaucrats who must hide the truth
from the families of victims and wider society. And then there is the
father who struggles against them all...

Download the book below in PDF format

Right click on the link below and give" save link as "

Extract from the book
(Chapter : The Burden that the mother entrusted)

"She was not aware of Rajan's tragedy. Whenever I came to Ernakulam from Calicut she used to ask for Rajan. I told her lie after lie. It made her uncomfortable. She started loosing faith in me, and behaving oddly with her loved ones.

Rajan's continued absence troubled her, and I had to suffer as a result. She expected Rajan to be with me whenever I came from Calicut, and anxiously awaited him. When she knew that Rajan was not with me color of disappointment would spread over her face. The depth and darkness of distress on her face went on increasing. She stopped talking to others, and went into a world of silence. Sometimes she accused me of not loving Rajan. She confided to relatives and friends that this was the reason I was not bringing Rajan along when I came. She murmured in secret that I never loved her or Rajan.

Meanwhile, many of Rajan's friends got married. One day when I reached Ernakulam she asked me, "All of Rajan's friends have got married. Are you not a father too? Are you not worried that he is yet to get married? "Oh, our son is dead," I felt like telling her then. The sentence got choked in my throat. At that moment I felt vengeance against her and the world. Regaining the balance of my thoughts, I would say, "I am trying to find a suitable girl for Rajan. But it's not that easy, you know ?” Her response used to be a lone empty stare of disbelief.

On March 3, 2000, Rajan's mother left me forever. A week earlier I had been to see her. As I bid farewell, she held my hands, still lying on the bed. There was a painful request in her eyes, "Will you bring Rajan along when you come next time?"” I couldn't look at her face. The guilt of telling her lie after lie had haunted me for years. Five days later I went to her again. Death was playing hide and seek somewhere near her, but she remembered everything.
She called me, "Will you do one thing for me?"
"Sure," I answered.
She gave a small packet of coins to me. Those were the coins she saved in that box. "

Eachara Warrier

He died in the month of April this year at the age of 85.

Related Links
A tribute to Eachara Warrier

Miles to go

Piravi(The Birth) a movie based on this incident

P. Rajan - A Naxalite sympathizer devoured by Khaki Rakshashas

Piravi (The Birth) (1988) - Review

The movie is inspired by the 'Rajan Case' that occurred in Kerala during the time of the emergency in 1978. The Chief Minister of the State attended a college function where a boy sang a song against him. The boy was caught by the police, brutally tortured in the police station where he died.

Piravi (The Birth) (1988)
is an award-winning feature film directed by Shaji N. Karun. The film is in Malayalam. It stars Premji, Archana and Lakshmi Krishnamurthy. The film's music is composed by G. Aravindan. Piravi met with widespread critical acclaim upon release. The film was screened and very well received at many film festivals across the world. It won the Golden Lotus Award for Best Film at the National Film Awards in 1989.


Piravi on Wikipedia

Piravi on IMDB

Comrades I do not have the movie right now
but I will try and get it soon and if possible.
I will host it online.

Friday, July 28, 2006

Emiliano Zapata

It is better to die on your feet than to live on your knees.
-Emiliano Zapata

Commemorate Martyr's Week Countrywide

July 28th, the day comrade Charu Majumdar was martyred is celebrated as
Shahid Week (Martyr's Week) throughout the country.

A couple of weeks earlier is the martyrdom day of Comrade Kanai
Chatterji. In memory of both comrades who paved the path of
Indian revolution, July 28th has come to be known as Martyr's Day.
It is these two comrades who brought the issue of armed struggle
and people’s war on to the political agenda of India.

Since then the Indian political scenario has never been
the same. Since the launch of the Naxalbari movement
over 10,000 comrades have laid down their lives for the
cause of the Indian revolution. Just in the 20 months since
the unity of the two main streams of the Maoists and the
formation of the CPI(Maoist) about 600 comrades
have been martyred.

They comprise the best sons and daughters of the country,
examples in selflessness and dedication to the cause of the poor.
On this day we cannot but remember their self-sacrificing nature
and their spirit of selfless dedication to the cause of the
oppressed masses of the country.

All these comrades, whether leaders, rank-and-file,
sympathizers, mahilla comrades or even the ordinary rural populace
dreamed of a new future of a genuinely free India, free from
injustice and inequality and for a genuinely
democratic order.

They all hated the present mafia raj that only benefits the rich and
wealthy and serves the imperialists to loot our country.
Can we ever forget their great and heroic sacrifice?

The government and its forces like ferocious monsters,
man-eating rakshasas, are massacring hundreds of revolutionaries
in the name of the Salwa Juddum, Sendra, Cobra, etc.

In DK even children of the age 12-14 were beheaded and their severed
head put on their own houses. Pregnant tribal women were gang-raped and
their stomachs then ripped open and brutally killed. Houses have been burned,
crops destroyed and the meager tribal belongings looted.

In AP the extra-judicial Cobras torture and kill mass leaders
and even chop up their bodies while still alive. The
greyhounds brutally torture and kill any
Naxalite they apprehend.

Similar is the trend in the other states, where the Naxalite
movement is present, like Jharkhand, Bihar,West Bengal, etc.

Besides this, thousands are being incarcerated in false cases and
tried in fast track courts like the senior Politburo members Sunil Roy
and Narayan Sanyal. Similar is the situation with the
Nationality movements of Kashmir and the
North East.

Can one keep silent in the face of all this terror?
To keep silent in the face of such brutalities amounts to consent. Let
us all break this conspiracy of silence and celebrate Martyr's Week
in memory of these heroic and dedicated comrades who
gave their lives for the oppressed people of our country
and thereby voice our dissent on what is going on in the name of

Thousands and lakhs need to come out on this week and raise their
voice in condemnation of the brutalities and in salute to the martyred.

Read the rest by Downloading Peoplesmarch june/july2006 issue

Right click and give save link as

Maoist Martyrs columns in India

Pictures from last years Martyr's week

Armed pickets posted in front of the new Maoist martyrs' column at Subhash Nagar near Lothukunta in Secunderabad, where an attempt to lay wreaths was made by the family members of martyr's.

The new martyrs' column was inaccessible at Subhashnagar area near Lothukunta in Secunderabad , except for this winged creature.

Maoists still have their deep impact in forests and a large support base. A scene at the martyr's week function on July 30, 2005 in the forests of Dantewada district, Chhattisgarh.

Images courtsey - The Hindu

Security beefed up for Martyrs' Week

Security beefed up for Martyrs' Week

Statesman News Service

PARALAKHEMUNDI, July 27: Police has been put on high alert in naxal-infested areas, as Martyrs’ Week observed every year by the CPI (Maoist) organisation, starts from tomorrow. All vehicles are being checked along the Orissa-Andhra Pradesh border.
The fear among people here has become more profound, after the killing of eight hardcore radicals, in the Nallamala forests of Prakasam district of Andhra Pradesh, where police have managed to liquidate the most high-profile Maoist leader, Madhav, and there is every chance that there will be retaliations.

When, where and how is the question on everybody's mind now. Andhra Pradesh police are alert and there is heavy checking and frisking on Andhra Pradesh-Orissa border roads, with gun-toting policemen maintaining a strict vigil at all points.
All roads leading to Palasa, Srikakulam, Vishakapatnam, Vizianagaram, etc are now being manned by armed police, who stop all vehicles, irrespective of the fact whether they are private or government vehicles.

Police have advised the elected representatives of all categories to maintain secrecy and not to venture out at night. Union minister for labour, Mr Chandra Sekhar Sahu has been asked not to come to Gajapati, during the Martyrs' Week, and a proposed Focus Village programme, scheduled to be held in naxal-infested Sapalaguda village of the Mohona block, was cancelled at the last moment due to security concerns.

There is continuous patrolling and combing operation in Gajapati district forest areas, and it is understood that AP police are also participating in the operation.
Police sources said that they are fully prepared and vigilant. Police here has been reinforced by the arrival of another CRPF platoon. With this, there are two CRPF contingents in the district, besides OSAP. Police are using private unmarked cars and jeeps.


Thursday, July 27, 2006

Johann Wolfgang von Goethe

Johann Wolfgang von Goethe

Death is a commingling of eternity with time; in the death of a good man, eternity is seen looking through time.-Johann Wolfgang von Goethe

Top Maoist leader cremated amid security

Top Maoist leader cremated amid security

Hyderabad, July 27 (IANS) Amid emotional scenes, a top Andhra Pradesh Maoist leader who quit his home about 25 years ago to work among the poor was cremated Thursday, four days after he was killed in an alleged gun battle.

Armed policemen were everywhere as the last rites of Burra Chinnaiah Goud, a tribal known by his nom de guerre Madhav, were performed at his native village Mangapeta in Karimnagar district, about 200 km from here.

Madhav, the state secretary of the Communist Party of India-Maoist (CPI-Maoist), was slain in an alleged gun battle with the police in Nallamalla forests of Prakasam district Sunday. Seven other Maoists, including five women, were also killed in the incident, which dealt a severe blow to the Maoist movement in the state.

Personnel of Greyhounds, the special anti-Maoist police force that shot dead Madhav and others, had virtually laid a siege to the village to prevent Maoists and their sympathisers from other villages from attending the funeral.

In the process, balladeer Gaddar, writer Varvara Rao and other Maoist sympathisers could not attend the funeral.

Karthik, the only son of Madhav who had never seen him, broke down as he lit the funeral pyre in the presence of relatives, close friends and villagers.

Braving rains, villagers gathered at Madhav's house to view the body of the man who left them some 25 years ago to join the Maoists.

The police deployed videos to film those visiting the slain man's house and attending the funeral.

Madhav's body was brought to the village early Thursday from Guntur, where the autopsy was conducted as per the orders of the Andhra Pradesh high court. Since the body had started rotting, the relatives decided to perform the last rites without delay.

Madhav was elevated to the top position in the outfit last year.

His wife Vasnatha had also joined the Maoists, leaving behind their six-month old son with Madhav's father 16 years ago. Police suspect that one of the slain women could be Vasantha.

Bodies of six other Maoists were handed over to their relatives, who were angry with the police for delaying the process.

Meanwhile, bodies of three Maoists were brought to their houses on the outskirts of Hyderabad under tight security. They include Shyamala and Susheela, who were Madhav's personal guards. The third Maoist was Udaykumar alias Ramana.


Nepal PLA camp pictures

Photojournalist usha titikshu recently returned from a journey to a PLA camp in Ramdhuni, Makwanpur District,(Nepal) with these photos. Media coverage on the Maoists during ceasefire is thin and this photo-report is to augment the meagre corpus of the output of the Free Press. Ed.

On the way to Ramdhuni, Makwanpur District

Pratap Smriti Brigade (PSB), company commander Asmita is in morning parade.

Special Central Command and South Regional Incharge Com. Sunil, PSB Kamisar Kumar, PSB Commander Bikalpa and friends in interactions with journalists in PSB temporary camp in Ramdhuni.

Pratap Smriti Brigade (PSB), company commander Asmita, after digging a canal for irrigation in Furkechaur, Makwanpur District. She was raped by Nepal Police personal in 2005.


Steel Corporations behind anti-maoist campaign

The Naxalites say steel companies and Chattisgarh's politician Mahendra Karma are backing Salwa Judum.

Karma has denied the charge.

The Naxal-hit districts of Dantewada and Bastar are now flush with investments.

The land is rich, worth thousands of crores. For Dantewada alone in the last two years the central government approved seventeen licenses for reconnaissance prospecting and mining.

Steel companies

Last year on June 4 Tata Steel signed a memorandum of understanding with the state government. The same day Karma set up Salwa Judum to fight Naxal violence. An MoU by Essar followed.

For Ganesh Uieke state committee member of the CPI Maoist this is no coincidence.

"They know that as long as they don't crush our movement we won't allow them to open their factories," says Uieke.

"We are now a force to reckon with. Earlier we were too small. We are strong know. We have the PLGA and the strength to hit at them".

Charge denied

Mahendra Karma described the charge against him as nonsense. "They are trying to defame my mission with this character assassination," he said.

"The MOU was signed by the government. I was there because I am the leader of the Congress party. This Salwa Judum movement was not sponsored by the government and it is not like the signing of the MOU between Tata and the government."

Ganapathy, the general secretary, the supreme leader of the Maoists made it clear recently that his war against the government would only intensify if it doesn't stop what he calls the facilitation of the plunder of Chhattisgarh.


Salwa Judum Activists lose their nuts and bolts

Madness grips Salwa Judum(State sponsered Terror)Activists.

Paranoid Salwa Judum (State sponsered terror)activists lynch people who came to their help in front of TV camera's and government officials

Lynch after carnage

Dantewada, July 18: The survivors of yesterday’s Maoist massacre in Chhattisgarh turned violent, lynching three alleged Maoist sympathisers, stoning the state home minister’s helicopter and insulting the leader of the Opposition.

The three people, from a neighbouring village, had come to the Errabore "relief camp" to place kafans (white cloth) on the 26 dead last evening when they were beaten to death in front of police officers and political leaders.

Yesterday, Maoists had attacked the state-sponsored "concentration camp" of some 4,000 villagers opposed to them, killing 26 and kidnapping 50.

Inmates of the camp alleged that Maoist sympathisers from nearby villages also took part in the carnage. The three lynched persons were victims of this suspicion.

Bodies of six of the 50 abducted people were found in the nearby forest this morning, taking the toll in the camp raid to 32. The rest of the hostages were freed.

At Errabore, the camp inmates’ fury didn’t spare leader of the Opposition and Mahendra Karma when he leant over to place a kafan on a body.

"You just look at the bodies. We’ll cover them with the kafan," a villager told the Congress leader who heads the Salwa Judum, a state-managed people’s campaign against the Maoists.

When home minister Ramvichar Netam arrived, he was surrounded by the inmates who lost their temper when he suggested they could leave the camp and return home.

As Netam’s chopper took off, a hail of stones forced it to land again. The minister climbed out only to face another round of outburst till the police broke up the mob.

The government had set up the “relief camps” after thousands of villagers began fleeing their homes from a Maoist backlash against suspected Salwa Judum participants. The 27 camps now shelter about 50,000 people.

It was one such camp in Errabore in Dantewada district, about 500 km south of capital Raipur, that the Maoists had attacked in the small hours of Monday.


Wednesday, July 26, 2006

Lal Singh Dil

When the labourer woman
Roasts her heart on the tawa
The moon laughs from behind the tree
The father amuses the younger one
Making music with bowl and plate
The older one tinkles the bells
Tied to his waist
And he dances
These songs do not die
Nor either the dance

- Lal Singh Dil

Lal Singh Dil - A naxalite poet

Punjabi Poet Lives in Penury

Born to lower caste, Lal Singh Dil made name with his pen

In the late sixties, when he used to recite poems, thousands of people would gather. Lal Singh Dil was a celebrated poet, akin to his contemporary revolutionary poets, Avtar Paash and Sant Ram Udasi (aka the "Punjabi poets"). He revolted against the unjust regime and fought not merely with his pen, but with a gun, as the American writer Ernest Hemingway fought. Lal Singh Dil, once a firebrand in Punjabi poetry, is currently going through tough times in his hometown of Samrala.

These days, most of his time is spent in a dark 10 x 13 room. One room corner still has marks from the last monsoon leakage and another has a small kitchen. Two walls of his room are colored with some written couplets. Except for a long row of mementos, it is hard to find anything in order. As soon as I reached his place, he came upstairs without looking at me, even without any query, and started making tea.

"Now I am in my late sixties and my health is quite poor, even sometimes I find it hard to breathe, otherwise everything is fine," he began to speak as if he was talking to himself.

When asked about his financial resources, he whispered, "Earlier, I was running a highway tea stall, but three years back that too had to close down. After that, conditions were severe; even sometimes I didn't have money to post letters. Now, a publisher gives me five hundred rupees ($13) every month as royalty for my books. Recently, I got some money for honor, which I deposited in a bank and I'm waiting when it will be finished. You can't read or write with an empty stomach.

Dil was the first in his family to finish school. On every step of his life, he faced humiliations because of his low caste. In the early sixties, as he was studying in his tenth standard, his first poem appeared in the famous Punjabi literary journal Preetlari. In the early seventies, he compiled an anthology of poems titled "Satluj di Hawa", meaning "The Winds of Satluj" (one of the five rivers of Punjab), which is equal to an epoch in the history of Punjabi revolutionary poetry. "With the thunder of spring" (phrase used for an armed peasant uprising of the mid-sixties) he too joined the Naxalite movement and attacked a police station with his fellow comrades. Later on, he was arrested and imprisoned for nine months.

When asked about his treatment in custody, he became silent for a while and spoke with a thick voice, "Compared to my comrades, they tortured me more because I was from a lower caste. It was extreme. But I never bowed in front of jail authorities despite being humiliated, and as a result I got the name 'rebel.'"

Due to the brutal repression of the police, the whole Naxalite movement suffered a setback. Most of Dil's comrades were either killed in encounters or were imprisoned, so nobody was there to welcome him when he was released from jail. Thus, in depression, he left Punjab for Uttar Pradesh. There he adopted Islam and worked as a watchman. In the early eighties, he came back to Punjab because of his deep love for his motherland. Even then he did not get married because he wanted to live "free."

Asked whether it was a mistake to join the Naxalite movement, he answered with little resentment, "No...not at all, it was the struggle for the betterment of society, even today there is need for such struggles, but with valid means."

When asked what inspires him to still write, for the first time in our conversation he looked into my eyes and answered after a long pause. "Social injustice, physical torture and mental agony all motivate me to write," and he began to sing the following lines of his poem "Dance":

When the labourer woman
Roasts her heart on the tawa
The moon laughs from behind the tree
The father amuses the younger one
Making music with bowl and plate
The older one tinkles the bells
Tied to his waist
And he dances
These songs do not die
Nor either the dance...


Related Links

A Readers Words - an excellent blog on literature, left, liberal, socialism, globalization, dalit, books, urdu poetry, south asia, India.

Interview with Naxal Leader Ganesh Ueike

Ganesh Ueike-Chandrababu Naidu Still a Target

Tuesday, July 25, 2006 (Dantewada forests):

NDTV travelled deep into Naxal territory in Chattisgarh and interviewed Ganesh Ueike, a top Naxal leader.

Ganesh Ueike, the militia's commander in Bastar and Dantewada, is an unassuming, middle-aged man but it soon became clear that he means business.Ueike, who is a state committee member of the CPI (Maoist), also said that former Andhra Pradesh Chief Minister Chandrababu Naidu is still a target even though he's no longer in power.

A few years ago, in a remarkably accurate and devastating attack, Naidu's car was blown up. He was lucky to have survived but he has not escaped the Naxals' anger.
"We still feel that we were right in targeting Chandrababu Naidu. Our tactics during the elections were correct.

If you make an analysis of the all India situation, he devised the worst policies to suppress us and to a great extent he was successful," said Ganesh Uieke, State Committee Member, CPI (Maoist)."So targetting him was essential for the movement. Hence we targetted him. It doesn't mean that if we kill Naidu the system will change.
If Varma goes Sharma will take over. But there is always a focal point of attack," he added.

NDTV : Is he still a target?

Ganesh Uieke: Yes. He is still a target.

NDTV : You say if Varma goes Sharma will take over. Then why is he still a target?

Ganesh Uieke:<span style="font-weight:bold;"> He killed 1200 of us and 5000 to 6000 others. He was a despot and an enemy of the people. So he will remain a target of the movement.

NDTV : Do you have a hit list?

Ganesh Uieke: No we don't have any hit list. The mainstream media calls us terrorists. But we are leading a political movement. We have a mass line and a political line. We don't believe that one or two actions would solve all the problems. Revolution doesn't happen like Bollywood movie.

NDTV : Are there other national leaders?

Ganesh Uieke: Whoever is against the movement is an enemy. Although the comparison with terrorism is perhaps inevitable, the Naxal leader condemned the Mumbai train blasts but expressed solidarity with the militancy in Kashmir.

NDTV : Do you agree with politics and militancy of Kashmiri militants? For instance the Mumbai blasts?

Ganesh Uieke:
You can't compare Kashmir to Mumbai. The Kashmiri people don't have to do this in Mumbai. They are fighting for Kashmir. Those who choose soft targets or do such things to create communal hatred have nothing to do with people.
They are mercenaries funded by national or international powers. Anyone who has people's interests in mind will not support such attacks against innocent people.

NDTV : So you don't target civilians?

Ganesh Uieke: No that's against the people. All this should be condemned.

NDTV : You say that you support all national movements like Kashmiri and NE militancy. Do you have any relationship with these outfits ?

Ganesh Uieke: Not directly. We are only giving them moral courage.


June- July 2006 Issue of

You can download it from their website

Or rightclick on the link below and give save as

June-July 2006 Peoplesmarch

Major blow to revolutionary movement in Andhra Pradesh

State secretary of CPI (Maoist) Madhav Killed in Encounter

ONGOLE: The bodies of eight Maoists, including State secretary of CPI (Maoist) Madhav, who were killed in an encounter with the police in Nallamala forest in Prakasam district on Sunday, are being brought to Markapur by a lorry either late on Monday night or early on Tuesday morning. They will be handed over to their relatives after post-mortem examination at Markapur later.

Transportation of the bodies was delayed because of some journalists causing embarrassment to the police. Some of them wanted to visit the place of encounter.
The police could identify the bodies of only four victims-- Madhav, Syamala, Suseela and Viswanadham of the Jana Natya Mandali, a frontal organisation of the CPI(Maoist)-- till now.

Inspector-General of Police (Grey Hounds) Durgaprasad, IG of Guntur Range Satyanarayan, Superintendent of Police, Prakasam, N. Balasubramanyam and Officer on Special Duty, Markapur, Ranganath and some press photographers and videographers flew in an helicopter from Markapur to the place of encounter.

They found that the bodies of the victims were scattered at different places in a radius of 2 km and saw bloodstains there. They were shown as to how sentries were guarding the place where the State Committee of the CPI (Maoist) was being held when the police raided the camp on Sunday.

The sentries took up positions from behind rocks and were guarding the place. They, however, did not find any tents pitched in the area.

The police brought all the bodies to one place and covered them with tarpaulins.
The arms and ammunition, kitbags, wireless sets etc recovered from the place were also pooled up at one place. The police also recovered some medicines used by Maoists against chikungunya.

Three constables hurt
The place lay deep inside the Nallamala forest which could be reached only by lorries from Yerragondapalem to Palutla, a distance of 40 km, and by trekking the remaining distance of 10-15 km.

The police said three constables sustained injuries and one of them was grievously wounded. They were airlifted to Markapur for treatment. Mandal Revenue Officer also flew in and held inquest at the place of the encounter.

Chhattisgarh accounts for 44 per cent of Naxal violence

Chhattisgarh accounts for 44 per cent of Naxal violence
New Delhi, July 26: Chhattisgarh alone accounts for over 44 per cent of incidents of Naxal violence across the country till June this year and 62 per cent of the casualties are reported from the state, the Rajya Sabha was told yesterday.

In a statement on the recent Naxal attack at the Errabore relief camp, Minister of State for Home Sriprakash Jaiswal said the state government was taking steps to deal with the menace and the Centre was helping it to counter violence.

He said in the last two years, the Centre has given Rs.60 crore for modernising the state police force and Rs.13 crore under the Security Related Expenditure (SRE) scheme.

A sum of Rs.52 crore has been sanctioned to the state to raise four India Reserve Battalions, he said.

He also said seven battalions of para-military forces have been deployed and a helicopter, 25 armoured vehicles and other equipment were given to the state. Besides, Rs.165 crore has been released under the Backward Districts Initiative (BDI) for socio-economic development in the Naxal-affected districts.


Tuesday, July 25, 2006

Rabindranath Tagore

Rabindranath Tagore

"Let me not pray to be sheltered from dangers but
to be fearless in facing them.
Let me not beg for the stilling of my pain, but for the heart to conquer it.
Let me not look for allies in life's battlefield but to my own strength.
Let me not cave in." - Rabindranath Tagore

Maa Bhoomi - Our Land (Telgu )

Maa Bhoomi - Our Land (Telgu )

*With sub-titles in English*

About the film:

Set during one of India's main peasant raisings, the Telangana insurrection between 1945 and 1951 in the pre-Independent state of Hyderabad, the Bengali director's first feature film tells the story of Chander's best-known novel from the peasant's point of view.

A young peasant, Ramaiah, rebels against the corrupt rule of the Nizam, and when his girl friend has to submit to the potentate's sexual coercion, Ramaiah leaves. He befriends a Marxist activist (the raising was CPI inspired) and participates in the independence struggle. When the peasants take over the village after the Independence, their anger boils over and they perpetrate a massacre.

In 1948 the Indian army marched into Hyderabad and suppressed the rising. Many of the ousted landlords returned to the power by becoming Congress officials, so that the peasants had to face the same struggle all over again.

This film is made in a documentary style inspired by Latin American political cinema but also uses Indian folk idioms such as Burra Katha style (the political education sequence with the union leader Maqbool). The film's view of rising is mostly an uncritical one, esp. in comparison with recent analysis by historians sympathetic to political groups currently working in Telangana.

Link for part I

Link for part II

Salwa-Judum : Rape two ,murder one for free ! Hurry offer open till Tribals last !

Government of Chhattisgarh proudly presents

Salwa-Judum : Rape two ,murder one for free !

Hurry offer open till Tribals last !

Quote on Salwa Judum
The Salwa Judum represents an abdication of the responsibility
for governance. It will lead to the militarisation and
criminalisation of society. It will result in civil war and
the nation will pay for it for a long time.

- Mr D R Kaartikeyan, former Director General of CRPF

List of women raped and hacked to death by Salwa Judum goons,CRPF and Naga Battalion and State Police Forces

List of people killed by state police, Naga police, para-military forces and goons in the name of Salwa Judum(Partial)

List of villages burnt by Vigilante Gangs of Salwa Judum, CRPF, Naga Police and State Police Forces(Partial)

For full coverage on Salwa judum Click Here!

Udupi: Fishermen oppose power plant

The power plant will affect fisheries: NEERI

# Nearly 40 tonnes of fly ash would get released everyday
# 15 per cent of fly ash generated is used for other purposes

UDUPI: Mogaveera Mahajana Sangha, the Coastal Karnataka Country Boat Fishermen's Federation and the Nandikur Janajagriti Samiti will hold a rally, at the Ajjarkad Grounds here on Tuesday protesting against the proposal to set up the 1,015 MW coal-based Nagarjuna Thermal Power Project in Udupi district.

Addressing presspersons on Monday, sangha president Pramod Madhwaraj said that leaders of all political parties, seers of various maths, and leaders of various fishermen organisations would participate in the rally. Nearly 30,000 fishermen from Udupi, Dakshina Kannada and Uttara Kannada districts would take part in the rally, he said.

National Environmental Engineering Research Institute (NEERI) conducted a study on the impact of thermal power plants on environment in 1996, when Cogentrix was allowed to establish a coal-based thermal power project at Nandikur. NEERI had then made it clear that the establishment of such a plant would affect fisheries. Nagarjuna Power Corporation Ltd would use seawater in large quantities and discharge it back into the sea.

Although NPCL uses electro static precipitator facility to reduce the fly ash content to 98 per cent, nearly 40 tonnes of fly ash would still get released every day. To reduce sulphur dioxide emission, NPCL has said that it would use the flue gas desulphurisation facility, but this would not reduce the impact on the environment said NEERI. Coastal Karnataka Country Boat Fishermen's Associations' honorary president Upendra Hosabettu said that NPCL was silent about the reduction in discharge of nitrogen and other gases. According to him nearly 15 per cent of fly ash generated by coal-based power plants in the country is used for other purposes. But it is impossible to utilise all the fly ash generated.


Mining Mafia along with state legislative terrorists raise Private Army

With the wealth looted from the people and the supernormal profits that they make by exploiting workers and workers wealth , state legislative terrorists and the mining mafia have raised army.

Nobody has a problem with this but when the workers join the Peoples Guerilla
Liberation Army(PGLA) to safeguard the people's wealth and workers interests
all hell breaks lose !

(Note : It is almost impossible to distinguish who is a state legislative
terrorist and who belongs to the mining mafia, there is just too much
overlapping )

'Karnataka mining mafia' and 'state legislative terrorists' together raise a Private Army

BANGALORE: Mine owners of Bellary are no VVIPs. Yet their lives are under such high risk that they have private armies — more than the Z category VVIP security — to ensure their safety! These armies do not come from anywhere.

Advertisements are issued in newspapers in Mumbai, Hyderabad and Chennai and only the tough are chosen. And to ensure a high level of security and reduce chances of infiltration, they are changed every six months!

Even a small mine owner has a minimum of three bodyguards. Big players like suspended BJP State Legislative terrorist Janardhan Reddy have several layers of security. "At any give point of time, there will be about 25 men around him.

Recently, he hired four former CISF personnel from Uttar Pradesh as his personal guards. Each of them is paid about Rs 15,000 per month excluding food and shelter," sources close to him said.

The threats to life are many: Not only rival mine owners, but politicians, who are inescapably linked with the mining sector, are lurking dangers.

Topping these are the pseudo-Naxals, who extort an average Rs 10 lakh per month from the mine owners. Result: Not only their homes, even vehicles escorting mine owners are packed with men and arms.

"They carry vehicle rods instead of machetes and swords. So, even if they are caught by the police, they escape saying the rods are for changing tyres," sources added. Most mine owners have gone in for imported sports utility vehicles.

Their drivers are trained to drive at top-speed of 200 kmph on highways and 80-100 kmph on the small roads. The convoy is huge for those owning mines on the Andhra Pradesh border. Reason: Fear of landmines and ambush by the neighbouring Anantapur district's factional lords.

Mine owners keep making frequent trips to Kurnool and Hyderabad in AP, so at least 15 to 20 vehicles with their men escort each of them. Surprise element is included —- the mine owners change routes and destinations at the last minute.


Wonder how many skeletons they have buried in their backyards ?

Boom in illegal mining abetted by middlemen

Boom in illegal mining abetted by middlemen

BELLARY: :Mineral can be mined only where it occurs." Bruce Forte, a British geologist, did not imagine that what he would reveal to the world in the year 1900 would, by the beginning of next century, become a bane for Bellarians.

He was the first to announce to the world that Hospet-Sandur region had good deposits of iron ore in the hill ranges.

The British did not delay in taking up the issue. By 1910 they laid railway line between Sandur and Guntakal, one of the earliest railway lines of this region. It was mainly to transport wood.

In 1950 iron ore mining started. But the mining was done at the tableland of the hills. In geological terminology it was called as float. In 1976 miners turned to reef mining and only State Trading Corporation (STC) and Minerals and Metals Trading Corporation (MMTC) used to export ore mainly to Japan.

In 1970 many private companies entered the mining and started reef mining. There were around 100 leases at that time. But compared to huge reserves in India the steel factories were very few. Entry of sponge iron made even 10 mm to 35 mm size ore usable.

Earlier it was between 120 mm and 150-mm. Second digging at float began. But Mysore Minerals Limited (MML) was the sole authority then. It notified these patta lands as its property and started mining. According to the rules a pattadar cannot mine the ore. In 1980 lumpy or float was emptied. MML denotified the area and left.

In 1985-86 it was found that 0 to 10 mm (dust) also had good market. So third digging of float had begun. But this time no holds barred for digging process. Farmers themselves have begun digging the ground where the ore was available just 3 to 4 ft deep. Agricultural lands became either mines or dumping grounds.

Farmers have become labourers in these places leasing out their lands to mine owners. They are engaged in sorting the fines, lump and shiver. Sponge iron factories have become home industries.

There are 884 such digging points in Hospet and Sandur areas. There are 131 crushers in Hospet region alone that are used to blend low quality ore with high quality to make required quality ore.

After illegal mining became an issue the authorities started raiding these crushers and digging points. On Thursday, Assistant Commissioner, Hospet sub-division closed five crushers in a raid. Government has given license to 27 sponge iron units in Hospet region. Four of them have begun their work.

"But there is another face of illegal mining," points out Minister Chennigappa in his confidential report dated March 6, 2006, to the Chief Minister Kumaraswamy. This is encroachment of forest area around the mines on hill tops. According to him 10,000 to 25,000 tonnes of iron ore is extracted illegally each day in these forest areas.

Iron ore mines of Hospet and Sandur have become mines of illegality and black money.

"No one need to have a mine now to transport ore. Licenses are sold to middlemen at three to four times the cost," pointed out Chandrababu, the president of Raithara Hakkubadhyatha Horata Kriya Samithi.

"Permit costs Rs 35 per tonne. It is sold at Rs 170 per tonne. Each load carries 17 to 25 tonnes and the middlemen gets Rs 800 per tonne,” he pointed out. There are 78 mining companies. But 44 have leases and around 20 are active. Others are open only for permits.

Hospet-Sandur region, according to latest study, has a reserve of 3,500 MT of iron ore. From this region 3,48,21,714 tonnes of ore was sent in 2004-05 while it was 3,51,74,368 tonnes in 2005-06, said Narasimhamurthy, Deputy Director of Mines and Geology.

China too, in the beginning accepted ore only from Government sources. Later it opened its doors to private miners. Now it is allowing even middlemen. This caused a boom in mining activity in Hospet-Sandur regions.


Sunday, July 23, 2006

Noam Chomsky

"The lifestyle of the Indian elite is amazing...I've never seen
such opulence even in America"---Noam Chomsky in New Delhi during his 1996 visit

Exclusive interview with CPI(Maoist) Spokesperson

Got this is in my mail today from peoplesmarch

An excellent read.
I recommend all comrades read it.


"There is need for caution with the present tactics"

CPN(Maoists) may be giving over-emphasis to the possibility of advancing the movement through the Constituent Assembly!

(With the latest developments in Nepal and the tactics and Strategy now being put forward by the CPN(Maoist) and the continuous appeals by Indian Marxist and revisionists to the Indian Maoists to learn from the Nepalese Maoists, People's March has been trying to get the response of the Indian Maoists. At last we have received by e-mail a response from the spokesperson of the CPI(Maoists) which, to a large extent, gives their response. We are giving below an interview taken by our correspondent with comrade Azad, the spokesperson of the CC, CPI(Maoist) in end June 2006.)

PM(Peoples March): How do you look at the current developments in Nepal?

Azad: We, in India, have been watching the ongoing developments in Nepal with great interest. The militant mass agitation by the people of Nepal against the reactionary, autocratic regime of King Gyanendra in April, in the backdrop of the powerful-armed struggle, was indeed historic. The people of Nepal had inscribed a glorious chapter in the annals of Nepal by forcing the fascist King to relinquish his adamant stand and to concede power to the parliament.

Particularly the one million strong mobilization in Katmandu in June and the lakhs mobilized in the districts indicates the growing influence of the Maoists in the country. Their influence to be encompassing even the urban areas. Our Party hails the historic struggle of the people of Nepal for democracy and a better society. However, the revolutionaries in India hope that the struggle in Nepal will go on until the overthrow of the King along with the so-called parliament and capture of power by the revolutionary and democratic forces.

We hope that the Maoists will be able to maintain their initiative to direct the ongoing political developments. They would need to remain alert in their alliance with the seven party alliance, which wants to strike a compromise with the King and betray the aspirations of the people.

PM: How do you view the tactics of the CPN(Maoist) in joining the interim government and promising to abide by the verdict of the constituent assembly?

Azad: The situation in Nepal and the World is complex. Due to the weakness in the international communist movement we see many a people's war bogged down in a struggle for survival for decades. In this situation it is no doubt that the Nepalese party and people have made historic advances. But we feel there is need for caution with the present tactics.

We think that Maoists forming a government jointly with the comprador bourgeois-feudal parties such as the reactionary Nepali Congress, revisionist CPN-UML and the other parties of the ruling classes will not really work out as they represent two diametrically opposed class interests. It is a wrong interpretation on the question of the state in Nepal to expect a possibility of a peaceful transition from the CA to the NDR.

One may bring some reforms from above and satisfy certain deprived sections of the people but it will never solve the basic problems of the people as you cannot smash feudalism and throw out imperialism from the soil of Nepal by utilizing the old state whatever embellishments one might do to give it a refurbished image. Nothing short of a revolutionary upheaval of the masses can achieve the above objective.

No doubt given the huge mass mobilizations throughout the country and the efforts to create an even wider upsurge are positive preparations to take the revolution forward, but some of the statements in the interviews tend to give the impression that the CPN(Maoists) are giving over-emphasis to the possibility of advancing the movement through the Constituent Assembly and in alliance with the 7-parties. This can have dangerous implications.

The present emphasis of the CPN(Maoist) needs to be seen with caution particularly after they had brilliantly built up their people's army of 25,000, their Base Areas, the UF and their new Organs of Power, and had stated that they were in the phase of the strategic offensive to seize power. In the process they effectively defeated all efforts of the police and RNA to crush them, maintaining the military and political initiative. But now there is no reference even to the strategic offensive and how it is to advance. They ofcourse do refer to this being a February revolution and that preparations must go on for the October revolution, but we are not aware this later fits into their strategic offensive plan.

PM: And what about the dissolution of the revolutionary organs of power and merging of the two armies?

Azad: These organs are the product of protracted people's war against the old state and they stand out as shining examples of people’s democratic dictatorship at the local level brilliantly built by the CPN(Maoist) party. The immediate task and the tactics should serve to strengthen these organs and mould them into organs of uprising like the Soviets in revolutionary Russia and China.

While consolidating these organs of power we need to strive to mobilize the masses in a big way into uprisings and strive to capture the cities leading to the final seizure of power at the opportune moment. In fact in the concrete situation in Nepal today the Maoists have really only two revolutionary options.

Either they must intensify the mass upsurge, evolve the organizational forms of political power suitable for seizing political power at the national/all Nepal level or if that is not possible owing to an unfavorable balance of class forces the existing base areas should be consolidated and strengthened and steps taken to complete the democratic tasks and advance towards in the direction of the socialist tasks. It is possible that in this process two Nepals will emerge - a reactionary one based in Kathmandu and few cities and a revolutionary Nepal based in the countryside.

As regards merging the army within a reconstituted state army, it is even more dangerous. Mao said that without a people's army the people have nothing. The army is one of the main instruments of class rule. How can two diametrically opposed classes have a single army? By merging the people's army with the reactionary army of the ruling classes (until now the faithful servant of the King) the people will become defenseless in case of a reactionary armed offensive by the enemy.

We have experiences of several countries where the toiling masses suffered heavily due to the wrong line of the Communist party. In Indonesia we know of the cruel massacres of communists and their sympathizers carried out by the ruling classes due to the line of hobnobbing with the reactionary ruling classes whom they considered as nationalist and democratic forces.

We also have before us the examples of Chile, Nicaragua and several other countries. One cannot rule out the possibility of the reactionary ruling classes carrying out a coup and reestablishing their monopoly over political power at an opportune moment when the revolutionary forces have been effectively disarmed or weakened.

This has been the experience in several countries following the 2nd World War i.e France, Greece etc. But, of course, if the Maoists do not pose a threat to the interests of imperialism and the comprador bureaucratic bourgeois (CBB) and they get accommodated and incorporated into the system then they too would be received with warmth by the ruling classes.

The invitation to the UN to supervise the cease-fire and monitor the demobilization of the people's armed forces is also dangerous. The UN is essentially an instrument of imperialism and particularly American imperialism. It is bound to work in the interests of the reactionary ruling classes of Nepal and imperialism. Overall, the decision of the CPN(Maoist) to dissolve the revolutionary people's governments in the countryside and to merge the PLA with the reactionary army will unfold an irreversible process of losing all the revolutionary gains achieved till now.

PM: The various parliamentary parties in India, not to speak of the Left parties like the CPI and CPI(M), have been hailing the line of participation in the interim government and parliamentary democracy taken by the Nepali Maoists and say that it will have a positive impact on the Maoist movement in India. How does your Party assess its impact?

Azad: It is the wishful subjective thinking of these parties in India that the develop-ments in Nepal will have a "positive" (what they mean by positive is the Maoists shun-ning armed struggle and joining the so-called mainstream of parliamentary politics) impact on the Maoist movement in our country.

Anyone who is familiar with the history of the Maoist movement in India, with the numerous ups and downs it had gone through in the past four decades after Naxalbari, knows how resilient our movement is. Even when confronted with great difficulties and odds against the revolutionaries, the genuine Maoists in India never vacillated or drifted from their line of new democratic revolution and achieving it through the line of protracted people’s war.

They had not only rejected the parliamentary path but also fought against the parties who wanted to participate in elections in the name of utilizing it as a tactic. Of course, there are some pseudo revolutionary parties, like the CPI(ML)-Liberation which had degenerated into parliamentary parties but these stand exposed before the people as revisionist parties in the guise of MLM.

No wonder, the various ruling class parties and the so-called left parties in India are elated at the change of stance by the CPN(Maoist) led by comrade Prachanda. They are naturally hailing the line taken by the CPN(Maoist) and are calling upon the Maoists in India to realize the futility of armed struggle and to follow the Maoists of Nepal by participating in the parliamentary pig-sty in India. As bitter enemies and opponents of revolution all these parties have been in the forefront in suppressing the ongoing people's war in India.

The decision of the CPN(Maoist) to participate in the government along with the reactionary parties, declaring their commitment to the so-called rule of law and the future constitution, and to become actors in the ensuing game of parliamentary elections following the elections to the constituent assembly has come as a breather for the ruling class parties in Nepal and the parliamentary system of India.

In fact, in his interview with The Hindu last February, comrade Prachanda himself hinted at the "positive" impact that his line of multiparty democracy will have on the Maoist movement in India. It must have come as a great relief for the Indian ruling classes to hear comrade Prachanda speak of his Party’s commitment to multiparty democracy and the message he wants to give to the Naxalite movement in India by successfully establishing multiparty democracy in Nepal.

When asked what he would say if he were to meet the Indian Prime Minister Manmohan Singh, comrade Prachanda said:

"We are fighting for genuine multiparty democracy but they are imprisoned there, in Patna, Siliguri, Chennai. If you release them all, a message will go out. And if you feel the Naxalite movement in India is a problem for you, we feel we are trying to deal with the problems in Nepal in a new way, so if you release our comrades and we are successful in establishing multi-party democracy in Nepal, this will be a very big message for the Naxalite movement in India. In other words, the ground will be readied for them to think in a new political way. Words are not enough; we need to validate what we are saying by establishing that democracy."

It is really a matter of grave concern that comrade Prachanda, instead of demanding the expansionist Indian ruling classes to stop all interference and meddling in Nepal's internal affairs, only talked of how their tactics would bring about a change in the outlook of the Maoists in India. Needless to say, these remarks will not only be deeply resented by the revolutionary masses of our country who have seen the wretched system of parliamentary democracy in India but will also be proved totally wrong through their revolutionary practice.

PM: The CPM and one of its top leaders, Sitaram Yechuri, was focused as a messiah from India to play a role between the Maoists and SPA. After returning back to India he and his party advised the Indian Maoists to follow the line of the CPN(Maoist). How do you explain this when they seem hostile to the Maoists here? Apart from this Yechury told the press that the Indian Maoists have planned to kill him and the secret regarding this decision was informed to him by the Nepali Maoists. What is your comment please?

Azad: The CPM is a party of the Indian ruling classes, representing the interests of imperialism, feudalism and the CBB in India. Their primary task seemed to be to bring the Nepalese Maoists into the parliamentary ‘mainstream’, which they also keep preaching to us in India. When we do not accede they have used the worst forms of state terror against us as in West Bengal. Their aim is the same in both countries - to pacify the Maoists in India with bullets and do the same with the Nepalese Maoists with sugarcoated bullets.

Yechuri and the CPM in effect played a more affective role for the Indian ruling classes when the Congress was fumbling with the Karan Singh fiasco. But when he overdid his 'diplomacy' and was sidelined, he cooked up the conspiracy theory of the Maoists in India planning to kill him to regain some credibility and try and sow seeds of mistrust between the two Maoist parties. A true Chanakya!!

PM: Why are you opposed to the tactic of multiparty democracy as proposed by the CPN(Maoist)?

Azad: Firstly, we are greatly perturbed by the proposal put forth by comrade Prachanda in his various interviews that his party was committed to multiparty democracy, which will be practiced not after the revolutionary seizure of power by the proletariat but within the semi-colonial semi-feudal society.

The 2003 Plenum document was quite vague regarding CPN(Maoist)'s concept of multiparty democracy or political competition, i.e., whether it is applicable after the seizure of power by the revolutionary party or prior to seizure itself. It only says it is possible to organize political competition within the constitutional limits of the anti-feudal and anti-imperialist democratic state. However, the statements, interviews and documents released after the 12-point Delhi

Agreement between the CPN(Maoist) and the Seven Party Alliance in November 2005 all point to the need for competition within the existing system after the Constituent Assembly is elected.
There is also confusion regarding the class character of the Parties with whom such political competition has to be conducted.

While the 2003 document clearly stated that these forces will be anti-feudal and anti-imperialist in character, the post November 2005 documents and interviews of CPN(MAOIST) provide scope for such competition with the constituents of SPA who are basically comprador bourgeois-feudal in their character in spite of their role against monarchy, or, more specifically, against King Gyanendra's autocratic rule.

In fact, in the same document entitled "Present situation and our tasks", presented by comrade Prachanda and adopted by the Central Committee Meeting of the CPN (Maoist) in May 2003, it correctly described the nature of the parliamentary parties in Nepal in the following words-
"In form it may appear as a triangular struggle involving monarchy, parliamentary forces and revolutionary forces, but in essence and if one looks from a class point of view, the struggle involving only two forces (reactionary and democratic forces) are seen.

It has been practically proved that the differences between the autocratic monarchical and parliamentary groups are nothing other than that of share of power within the old state. It has been time and again proved in Nepal that monarchy in the name of nationalism (fake) and parliamentary forces in the name of democracy (fake) want to occupy the seat of power and betray the nation and the people on identical class basis.

"What we have been saying from a class and theoretical point of view and what has become all the more exposed in the present cease-fire and negotiation process is that it is the clash of interests between different international reactionary centers which is behind the mutual recriminations and contradictions between different reactionary groups in Nepal. As the royal army and the palace elements are being manipulated and protected by western imperialism, particularly American imperialism, and the main parliamentary forces by the Indian rulers who seek special hegemony in South Asia, they are having a continuous tug of war between them.

Hence the whole Party should be clear that, in the background of political development particularly after the palace massacre, the idea of seeing either the monarchical or the parliamentary forces of Nepal as more democratic or more nationalistic than the other, will be specially harmful and wrong.

It has become all the more clear in the present day Nepal that we can never have any ideological and political relationship with either monarchical or parliamentary groups except to manage contradictions in a particular situation."

While the above analysis of the class character of the parliamentary parties, their fake democracy and loyalty to various imperialist powers, is basically correct, it is indeed very unfortunate that the CPN(Maoist) has not adhered firmly to that analysis from a strategic and class perspective.

It is one thing to make necessary adjustments, understandings and tactical unity with these parliamentary forces and even with a section of the imperialists against the main enemy when conditions for such alliances become ripe. But to create illusions on the character of these parties or overlook their links with imperialists and Indian expansionists will do great harm to the revolution in the long run.

Moreover, we find that comrade Prachanda and the CPN(Maoist) had turned the tactics to the level of strategy and path of the world revolution in the 21st century. Thus, in his interview to The Hindu comrade Prachanda stressed that the Maoists' commitment to multi-party democracy is not tactical but the result of a lengthy ideological debate within the party over three years. He said: "our decision on multi-party democracy is a strategically, theoretically developed position and we are telling the parliamentary parties that we are ready to have peaceful competition with you all."

The CPN(Maoist) leader directly assured the comprador bourgeois-feudal parliamentary parties that his Party is ready to have peaceful competition with all of them.

And by describing this decision on multiparty democracy as a strategically, theoretically developed position comrade Prachanda has brought a dangerous thesis to the fore-the thesis of peaceful coexistence with the ruling class parties instead of overthrowing them through revolution; peaceful competition with all other parliamentary parties, including the ruling class parties that are stooges of imperialism or foreign reaction, in a so-called parliamentary elections; abandoning the objective of building socialism for an indefinite period; and opening the doors wide for the feudal-comprador reactionaries to come to power by utilizing the backwardness of the masses and the massive backing from domestic and foreign reactionaries or the comprador bureaucratic bourgeois and feudal and petty bourgeois forces to hijack the entire course of development of the society from the socialist direction to maintaining the existing system (even if in a new form) in the name of democracy and nationalism.

Whatever may be our good intentions for building a more democratic system, the laws governing class struggle will not permit of such a system. History has proved this time and again from the days of the Paris Commune right up till the earlier revolutions in Asia, Africa and Latin America.

PM: Then are you in favour of multiparty democracy at least after the seizure of power? If not what is the form of government you envisage after the revolution?

Azad: The Marxist-Leninist-Maoist understanding regarding the form of government that will be best suited for the proletariat is the Commune or the Soviet or the Revolutionary Council that can best serve the proletariat and the vast majority of the masses as they act not as talking shops and mere legislative bodies but as both legislative and executive bodies.

The representatives to these bodies are elected and are subject to recall any time the people feel they do not serve their interests. If we look at the very process of the protracted people's war it entails the setting up democratic power in the Base Areas of all anti-imperialist and anti-feudal forces UNDER THE LEADERSHIP OF PROLETARIAT elected democratically at gram sabhas with the right to remove them also by the gram sabha.

Here there is a close interaction between the power structures and the will of the people and therefore truly democratic. Once power is seized at the all-India level, till the transformation to the socialist stage all genuinely anti-imperialist and anti-feudal parties will be part of the new power, and the transition to socialism can only take place through continuing the class struggle under the dictatorship of the proletariat.

This does not deny democracy for the masses at large but, as Lenin said, petty production generates a bourgeoisie daily, hourly and these elements will find their representative at all realms of state power, including the Party. Can anyone think of a better form of government and better form of exercising democracy in the real sense of the term?

"To decide once every few years which members of the ruling class is to repress and crush the people through parliament-this is the real essence of bourgeois parliamentarism, not only in parliamentary- constitutional monarchies, but also in the most democratic republics', said Lenin.

This was said by Lenin over a century back. Since then, particularly since World War II, the parliament and its related institutions have become even more corrupt and rotten to the core.

A good example of how the new power was built was the Paris Commune. The concepts practiced there were further worked out in the Soviets of the USSR, the communes in China and the experiments of the GPCR and is being sought to be practiced in the Base Areas being set up by the Maoists in different parts of the world.

Comrade Lenin also explained very lucidly how the Parliament functions even in the most democratic of the republics and, contrasting it to the Commune, showed how the Communes (or the Soviets in Russia and Revolutionary Councils in China) are the most suitable forms of government for the proletariat and the toiling masses.

"The parliamentary bourgeois republic hampers and stifles the independent political life of the masses, their direct participation in the democratic organization of the life of the state from the bottom up. The opposite is the case with the Soviets.

"The way out of parliamentarism is not, of course, the abolition of representative institutions and the elective principle, but the conversion of the representative institutions from talking shops into “working” bodies. "The Commune was to be a working, not a parliamentary body, executive and legislative at the same time."

"The Commune substitutes for the venal and rotten parliamentarism of bourgeois society institutions in which freedom of opinion and discussion does not degenerate into deception, for the parliamentarians themselves have to work, have to execute their own laws, have themselves to test the results achieved in reality, and to account directly to their constituents. …. We cannot imagine democracy, even proletarian democracy, without representative institutions, but we can and must imagine democracy without parliamentarism, if criticism of bourgeois society is not mere words for us, if the desire to overthrow the rule of the bourgeoisie is our earnest and sincere desire, and not a mere "election” cry for catching workers' votes, as it is with the Mensheviks and Socialist-Revolutionaries,"

PM: And how do you ensure political competition with other parties? The CPN(Maoist) claims that it is only by organizing political competition and institutionalizing the right of the masses to install an alternative revolutionary party in power that counter-revolution can be effectively checked.

Azad: It is, indeed, surprising that the CPN(Maoist) should arrive at such a conclusion even after the proletariat is equipped with rich and varied experiences on the period of transition from capitalism to socialism, after it is armed with such an appropriate form, method and weapon as the cultural revolution and is in possession of a wealth of writings by our teachers-Marx, Engels, Lenin, Stalin and Mao-and by several Marxist writers on the subject of checking the degeneration of the Party, Army and the State; preventing the restoration of capitalism; and building a new type of state and society.

To think that continuous proletarianization and revolutionization of the Communist Party can be ensured and that counter-revolution can be effectively checked by organizing so-called political competition or by institutionalizing the right of the masses to install an alternative revolutionary party or leadership on the state means falling into the trap of bourgeois formalism and under-mining the real task of mobilizing the masses extensively to wage bitter class struggle against the old reactionary defeated classes and the new bourgeois class developing within the Party, Army and the Administration.

It is difficult to grasp how alternative revolutionary parties can exist- especially since the communist parties have always understood that different political lines represented either a proletarian outlook or a bourgeois outlook.

The crucial point lies not in ensuring the right of the masses to replace one Party by another through elections, which is anyway the norm in any bourgeois republic or bureaucrat bourgeois-feudal republic, but ensuring their active and creative involvement in supervising the Party and the state, in checking the emergence of a new bureaucratic class, and themselves taking part in the administration of the state and society and in the entire process of revolutionary transformation.

And it will be the foremost task of the Party to organize and lead the masses in checking counter-revolution and bringing about the revolutionary transformation in all spheres through continuing revolution under the dictatorship of the proletariat. And this is the most important lesson handed down to us by the entire historical experience of the world revolution, particularly by the GPCR.

Moreover, is it possible for the Party of the proletariat to prevent the comeback of the defeated classes to power and check counter-revolution peacefully or by a coup by providing such an opportunity to them to compete in a "democratic" manner?

Would the Bolshevik Party have won the elections in Russia after the revolution had it organized such political competition given its near-total absence in the vast backward countryside where the most reactionary ideas ruled the roost?

In fact, the Bolshevik Party had to even dissolve the constituent assembly immediately after it captured power despite the fact that it was only a minority in it as the constituent assembly acted as an instrument of the reactionaries and became an obstacle for carrying out revolutionary reforms and for exercising proletarian dictatorship as in the Soviets.

It is not just the case of Russia, in many countries, particularly in semi-colonial semi-feudal countries, where petty commodity production and peasant economy predominate, the feudal ideology, culture, customs and the force of habit among the majority of the population will make it possible for other non-proletarian and even reactionary parties under the anti-feudal anti-imperialist cloak to come to power relatively easily.

Hence it will not be surprising if we find that the idealist and subjective proposal of the CPN(Maoist), though made with good intentions, ultimately becomes a convenient tool in the hands of the capitalist-roaders to seize power.

As regards political competition with other parties, we have the experience of China where several democratic parties such as the Democratic League, Peasants and Workers' Party and others competed with the CPC and contested in elections to the various organs of power.

Although these existed for almost a decade after the revolution the people rejected them when they refused to support socialism and tried to take China along the capitalist road. Political competition was encouraged in China, not in the form of participation in Western-type bourgeois parliamentary elections but in the elections to various bodies. Democratic parties and organizations belonging to the four classes that comprised the motive forces of revolution were to take part in the elections to the various bodies.

The CPC had strived to unite all the anti-feudal anti-imperialist parties and forces during the new democratic revolution and also after the seizure of power and establishment of people's democracy or the people's democratic dictatorship.

In his article On the correct handling of contradictions among the people, in 1957, Mao explained the policy of the CPC towards other political parties after the capture of power thus:

"It is the desire as well as the policy of the Communist Party to exist side by side with the democratic parties for a long time to come. But whether the democratic parties can long remain in existence depends not merely on the desire of the Communist Party but on how well they acquit themselves and on whether they enjoy the trust of the people.

Mutual supervision among the various parties is also a long-established fact, in the sense that they have long been advising and criticizing each other. Mutual supervision is obviously not a one-sided matter; it means that the Communist Party can exercise supervision over the democratic parties, and vice versa."

In China many methods were evolved to prevent capitalist restoration and the rise of a new bourgeoisie in the Government and Party. Mao's let a hundred flowers blossom and let a hundred schools of thought contend; his 'Three-thirds' system of democratic representation which restricts the seats of Communist party members in all elected bodies to a maximum of one-third of the whole and gives two-thirds of the seats to members of other parties and non-party elements; his putting six political criteria for political parties to stand for elections; etc; are only a few of the examples adopted.

Democracy is not merely a formal putting a vote but must exist in the very living process of any organization, with the leadership under the close supervision of the masses and cadre; this too is possible with only a general raising of MLM consciousness of the Party and the masses and intensifying the class struggle.

In China there were many parties after the revolution sharing power, but the unity was on a principled basis, and was part of the front to deepen the class struggle against the remnants of the feudal and CBB forces. In Nepal they in effect dilute the class struggle by forming a government with feudal and CBB elements.

The most important thing is that all the revolutionary bodies in the proletarian or people's democratic state are elected and every person so elected is subject to recall, which is not seen, in the so-called parliamentary democracies.

PM: Do you find anything wrong when the CPN(Maoist) says it will go to the new democratic stage via the bourgeois democratic or multiparty republic?

Azad: No Maoist would say it is wrong to fight for the demand of a Republic and for the overthrow of the autocratic monarchy. And likewise, none would oppose the forging of a united front of all those who are opposed to the main enemy at any given moment. Needless to say, such a united front would be purely tactical in nature and cannot, and should not, under any circumstances, determine the path and direction of the revolution itself.

The problem with the theorization by the CPN(Maoist) lies in making the fight against autocracy into a sub-stage of NDR and, a tendency to make the sub-stage overwhelm (dominate and determine) the very direction and path of the revolution. The programme and strategy of NDR drawn up by the Party prior to its launching of the armed struggle, its targets to be overthrown, and even the concrete class analysis made earlier based on which the revolution had advanced so far, are now made subordinate to the needs of the so-called sub-stage of Nepalese revolution. The sub-stage of a bourgeois democratic republic appears, from their interviews and statements, to have become the all-determining factor.

As far as we know,, we can say that the numerous types of state system in the world can be reduced to three basic kinds according to the class character of their political power:

1) republics under bourgeois dictatorship {in addition to these there are the fake republics in the backward semi-feudal, semi-colonial countries under the joint dictatorship of the CBB and feudal elements, backed by imperialism );

(2) republics under the dictatorship of the proletariat; and

(3) republics under the joint dictatorship of several revolutionary classes. In essence, the slogan of a bourgeois democratic republic given by the CPN(Maoist) cannot but come under the first type of republic in spite of the participation of the revolutionary party in the state power along with the comprador bourgeois-feudal parties.

In his interview with the BBC correspondent, comrade Prachanda gave his vision of future Nepal in the following words:

"We believe that the Nepali people will go for a republic and in a peaceful way the process of rebuilding Nepal will go forward.

"In five years' time Nepal will move towards being a beautiful, peaceful and progressive nation.

"In five years' time the millions of Nepalis will already be moving ahead with a mission to make a beautiful future, and Nepal will truly start becoming a heaven on earth."

He further asserted that a democratic republic elected in such a way will solve the problems of Nepalis!!

"We believe that with the election of a constituent assembly, a democratic republic will be formed in Nepal. And this will solve the problems of Nepalis and lead the country into a more progressive path."

Anyone reading the above lines would think that these views reflect more a nationalist sentiment than a proletarian class outlook.

How will Nepal start becoming a "heaven on earth" after becoming a bourgeois republic ?

How can the formation of a democratic republic "solve the problems of Nepalis"?
Can it free itself from the clutches of imperialism after becoming a republic in the present imperialist era?

Does the CPN(Moist), which claims to believe in MLM, really think that the "process of re-building Nepal will go forward in a peace-ful way"?
And is there a single instance in world history where such peaceful process of rebuilding has taken place?

Does not the history of world revolution show that bitter class struggle, bloody and violent at times, continues even after decades following the capture of power by the proletariat? Then how could comrade Prachanda think of such a peaceful process of rebuilding Nepal even at this sub-stage?

Do the parties belonging to the SPA really fight imperialism, Indian expansionism and feudalism in Nepal? Is there a guarantee that the CPN(Maoist) will defeat the bourgeois-feudal parties, with which it wants to go for political competition, in the elections and ensure that Nepal does not drift into the clutches of imperialism and Indian expansionism?

How could one believe that once the elections to the Constituent Assembly are over and Nepal becomes a Republic, not under the leader-ship of the working class party but may be under an alliance of a hotchpotch combination of Parties i.e., an alliance of ruling class and working class under CPN(Maoist), the country would free itself from feudalism and imperialism and become a "beautiful, peaceful and progressive nation" ?

According to comrade Prachanda's opinion, "the reactionary class and their parties will try to transform this republic into bourgeois parliamentarian one, where as our party of the proletariat class will try to transform it into new democratic republic. How long will be the period of transition, is not a thing that can right now be ascertained. It is clear that it will depend upon the then national and international situation and state of power balance."

This so-called transitional multiparty republic is sought to be transformed into a new democratic republic through peaceful struggle by means of political competition with reactionary class and their parties, which try to transform it into a bourgeois parliamentary republic!!

Whatever be the tactics adopted by the CPN(Maoist) the most objectionable part in the entire matter is its projection of these tactics as a theoretically developed position which it thinks should be the model for the revolutions in the 21st century. In the name of fighting against dogmatism our comrades of CPN(Maoist) are slipping into dangerous territory.

Moreover, as long as the Party wages a consistent struggle against imperialism and local reactionaries and pursues the line of redistribution of land and wealth, nationali-sation of all comprador, foreign industries, banks and foreign trade, it is certain to face opposition from the other parliamentary parties.

And if it wants to be part of the parliamentary game it has to abide by its rules and cannot carry out its anti-feudal, anti-imperialist policies in a thoroughgoing way. Even the independence of the judiciary has to be recognized as part of the game of parliament and can cause obstruction to every reform which the Maoist party tries to initiate after coming to power through elections.

This is already being seen with the 8-point agreement being said to be illegal. US imperialism is even strongly demanding that the Maoist should participate in the constituent assembly only after they lay down their arms. The CPN(Maoists) have rightly opposed this position of the US and also Indian expansionists. We expect that they will remain firm in this.

Then there will be several institutions like the judiciary, the election commission, the media, various artistic, cultural and even religious bodies, non-government organizations, and also human rights organizations some of which are floated by the ruling classes, and so on. If one slips into the quagmire of the so-called multiparty democratic republic, one cannot escape from upholding these so-called independent institutions. Many of these can become hideouts of the reactionary forces and work for counter-revolution in diverse subtle ways. One cannot forget the subtle manner in which the western agencies infiltrated and subverted the societies in East European countries and even in the former Soviet Union.

PM: Comrade Prachanda says that the tactics adopted by his party are based on the specificities of the political and military balance in the world as well as particular class, political and power balance in Nepal besides the experiences of the 20th century. What is your Party's opinion on this?

Azad: It is true that comrade Prachanda in his interview to The Hindu last February cited the above three factors for his party coming to the decision on multiparty democracy. In fact, this understanding could be seen in the CPN(Maoist) even before the said interview. For instance, in the CC meeting in August 2004, it began to be skeptical about the prospects of victory in a small country like Nepal when it is confronted by imperialism and there is no advancement of any strong revolutionary movement.

"In the present context, when along with the restoration of capitalism in China there is no other socialist state existing, when despite objective condition turning favorable currently there is no advancement in any strong revolutionary movement under the leadership of the proletariat, and when world imperialism is pouncing on people everywhere like an injured tiger, is it possible for a small country with a specific geo-political compulsion like Nepal to gain victory to the point of capturing central state through revolution? This is the most significant question being put before the Party today. The answer to this question can only be found in Marxism-Leninism-Maoism and on this depends the future of the Nepalese revolution."

The same Plenum had also pointed out why the series of tactical steps like cease-fire, negotiation, political way out etc., were taken up.

"There is no doubt that the imperialist forces are now in preparation for even more vicious assault as the Nepalese People's War is in preparation for strategic offensive from its current position of strategic equilibrium.

The entire complexities, opportunities and challenges of Nepalese revolution are the manifestations of this objective condition…but, in Nepal, the development of revolution has reached a very sensitive stage of preparation for strategic offensive. It is essential to understand that the series of tactical steps undertaken by the Party such as cease-fire, negotiation, political way out etc. are based on this strategically favorable and tactically unfavorable world situation and the condition of strategic equilibrium inside the country."

It is true that the revolutions everywhere are confronting a tough situation especially after the setback of China. Tactically speaking, in the present-day world, the enemy forces are quite strong while our subjective forces are weak. World imperialism has unleashed a massive offensive on the revolutionary forces, national liberation movements and on the people's movements everywhere. But this is only one side of the coin. At the same time, the objective conditions are quite favorable; imperialism, particularly US imperialism, is hated by the people everywhere and massive people’s movements are breaking out against imperialism, particularly US imperialism, throughout the world. Any revolution in today's world has to inevitably face the attacks by the imperialists.

To face an enemy much bigger than the revolutionary forces there are no question that it may and will require a great flexibility in tactics. Particularly when we are a sizable force such flexibility can more effectively be wielded for the achievement of our goals. But while doing so there is always a danger to lose sight of our strategic tasks of the seizure of power by armed force. From the statements being made by the CPN(Maoist) leadership it appears that that danger is there.

Many statements being made and the interviews being given tend to negate some of the basic Marxist understandings regarding state and revolution. It may be said to have been made in the context of diplomacy; but its end result is to mis-educate the revolutionary and progressive camp. It is not expected from a Marxist statesman.

In the interview com Prachanda had gone to the extent of saying:" We are ready to accept the people's verdict, if they chose constitutional monarchy and multiparty democracy." It is indeed a great tragedy to see the Maoist party finally ending up in these political positions in spite of having de facto power in most of the countryside.

PM: Comrade Prachanda says that the line of multiparty democracy applies to the Maoist movement in India too. How does your party see this?

Azad: We saw his comments on this point in his interview with The Hindu correspondent. It says:

"We believe it applies to them too. We want to debate this. They have to understand this and go down this route. Both on the question of leadership and on multiparty democracy, or rather multiparty competition I believe those who call themselves revolutionaries in India need to think about these issues. And there is a need to go in the direction of that practice. We wish to debate with them on this. If revolutionaries are not going to look at the need for ideological development, they will not go anywhere."

Such advice has been coming forth from the various ruling class parliamentary parties in India since long. The revisionist CPI and CPI(M), who swear by Marx and Lenin, regularly sermonize through their magazines, documents and statements, regarding the futility of armed struggle for seizing state power and achieving revolutionary social transformation. They desperately try to show how parliamentary multiparty democracy is the best instrument for achieving this transformation as witnessed in West Bengal and Kerala. The CPI(ML)-Liberation, in the name of MLM, preaches the virtues of multi-party democracy and calls all those who do not wish to be tied to the parliamentary pig-sty as anarchists and adventurists.

It is good that the CPN(Maoist) wants to debate with the Maoists in India on the question of leadership and multiparty democracy. There have been interesting discussions and exchange of opinions and experiences between the leaderships of our two parties on the concept of leadership, on the question of personality cult and concentration of all power in the hands of one individual, etc.

Our opinion has always been that it is necessary for a good section of the Party leadership to work among the masses and concentrate on building class struggle even after the seizure of power in order to prevent the degeneration in the Party functionaries, officials in the various state departments, particularly the armed forces, in the various units in the production sphere, and so on. We must encourage the masses to criticize the mistakes committed by the party and the party leaders even in the course of the revolutionary movement prior to the seizure of power. We must develop collective leadership rather than focusing on any one individual or delegating revolutionary authority.

Dependency on one or few individuals instead of developing collective leadership and involving the entire Party membership and the masses in decision-making has been one of the causes that led to great reversals in Russia and China where, after the demise of outstanding proletarian leaders like Stalin and Mao, the CPSU and the CPC turned revisionist so easily.

We agree with comrade Prachanda when he says that "from the lessons of the 20th Century communist states - we want to move to a new plane in terms of leadership - where one person doesn't remain the party leader or the head of state."

In fact, this had also been one of the major points of debate during the inner-party struggle in the CPN(Maoist) during 2004-05 when comrade Bhattarai (Laldhoj), in his Basic Questions for Inner-Party Discussion, raised questions such as: Is proletarian leadership a centralized expression of collectivity, or is it a person centered? Does the principal law of dialectics, viz. one divides into two, apply to the main leadership or not? How does the system of a single person occupying the top Party, army and the state posts, and that too for life, solve the question of generating revolutionary successors and of continuous revolution? Our party, the CPI(Maoist) wish to conduct a serious debate on these questions and also on the question of Prachanda Path and on the concept of path, thought and ism.

PM: What would you say with regard to the concept of 21st century democracy as proposed by the CPN(Maoist) led by comrade Prachanda?

Azad: What is new in the concept of 21st century democracy raised by the CPN(Maoist) and how is it qualitatively different from the democracy of the 20th century? The CPN(Maoist) had also claimed that its "decision on multi-party democracy is a strategically, theoretically developed position" which is even applicable to conditions in India. One knows about bourgeois democracy and proletarian democracy, that democracy too has a class character, which in a class-divided society democracy will serve the ruling class while exercising dictatorship over the rest of the people.

In bourgeois republics the nature of democracy is bourgeois. It is meant to serve the bourgeoisie while oppressing the vast majority of the people. Its essence is bourgeois dictatorship. Likewise, in people's democratic republics, the democracy is meant for all the anti-feudal, anti-imperialist classes while dictatorship is exercised over the enemies of the people and their agents. The qualitative difference between different types of democracies lies in their class character. But when the CPN(Maoist) says that there is a qualitative difference between the democracy of the 20th and 21st centuries without any reference to the class character, it is not only unconvincing but also seems to be highly subjective.

One reason given is that in the 21st century there has “been unprecedented development in science and technology, particu-larly in electronic communication techno-logy, in the world.” How this unprecedented development has a bearing on the strategy of the revolutions in the 21st century or on the nature of democracy in the 21st century is not clear.

It says that "in the field of ideology, the central committee has attempted to draw a strategic outline of the world revolution based on the analysis of today's world situation and mainly the new analysis of globalized imperialism and proletarian movement and has succeeded to present a totally new concept in relation to leadership and accomplishing revolution and preventing counter-revolution" and "in the field of politics" it says, it has made a "qualitative leap in the concept regarding political and military strategy and tactic established in the 20th century."
We are still not clear what is this new concept and qualitative leap claimed by CPN(Maoist) except for their line of multiparty democracy and political competition which boils down to competing peacefully with the various reactionary and revisionist parties for power in a so-called transitional multiparty democratic republic.

PM: Finally, where do you see the Nepalese revolution heading?

Azad: We also do see reports that the PLA still maintains its firepower and alertness. Also there is reference to the recent upsurge being the February revolution and the preparations going on for the October revolution. There are also reports of huge mass mobilization to win over new forces to the side of the revolution, including in the urban areas. Also the US imperialists and Indian expansionists (including their stooge, Yechuri) are openly trying to sabotage the alliance demanding as a prerequisite the laying down of arms by the Maoists. Besides, the Maoists have stated that they will not give up their arms and will maintain their own camps. All these are positive trends indicating the readiness of the Maoists to advance towards the New Democratic Revolution.

There is need to beware from two situations: falling into any traps laid by the ruling classes and their imperialist and expansionist masters; second to beware of a sudden coup and massacre of communists as witnessed in Greece, Indonesia, Chile and a number of other countries. Even a huge mass base in these countries did not stop such massacres. But we will expect that the CPN(Maoists) will steer the Party forward and advance the revolution for the seizure of power countrywide.

PM: One last question. What is the message you would like to give to the revolutionary ranks of Nepal, India and the rest of the world?

Azad: First we would seriously request the CPN(Maoist) and its leadership to reconsider some of its recent positions and learn from the history of past mistakes. The Nepalese party and people have a great history of struggle and sacrifice. Over 10,000 have lost their lives in the course of the present people's war. We salute these heroic martyrs of the Nepalese and world revolution. We are confident that the great Nepalese people will advance the revolution forward facing the numerous twists and turns in the movement. There is no doubt that revolution today is no simple task; the path will be zig-zag.

We also call on the people of India to lend full support to the Nepalese revolution. But while doing so it is also the duty of the Indian and world proletariat to render friendly suggestions to their comrades in Nepal. After all, the interests of the Nepalese revolution are very much in the interests of world revolution, and more particularly of its neighbor, the Indian revolution. The revolutionary people of India are ready for any sacrifice in support of the Nepalese revolution. We are confident that we will march forward, together, against the obnoxious system of world imperialism and its local semi-feudal base.

PM: We, on behalf of the People's March wish to thank you for the interview on this so crucial issue in a neighboring country.

Azad: Thank You