Why Maoist chairman Prachanda chose to expose himself in New Delhi by speaking against one country in favor of the other?
By Dinesh Wagle
Wagle’s Web Log
One of the most shocking parts of Prachanda’s recent New Delhi, India visit was the statement he made during an interview with the Hindustan Times daily. It was interesting to see the Maoist chairman repeating the same lines from the interview to Nepali journalists in Kathmandu’s International Airport upon his return from India.
First read these lines from the Sunday edition of Hindustan Times:
With the Maoists on the ascendant in Nepal, activities of the Pakistani Inter-Services Intelligence (ISI) are on the decline, because their activities were actively encouraged by the Palace. In an interview exclusive to [Nilova Roy Chaudhury of] the Hindustan Times, Chairman and supremo of Nepal’s Maoists ‘Prachanda’ disclosed, he said, for the first time ever, that when he decided to take the ‘movement to the streets’, back in 1996, he was offered “assistance” in the form of arms and money from representatives claiming to be from the ISI.
“We must accept that the anti-India activity from Nepal (including acts like the hijack of IC814) was centred in the royal durbar,” Prachanda said. “When this feudal king (Gyanendra) was just the king’s brother, and a businessman, he had a business partnership with Dawood Ibrahim and conducted much of his smuggling through him,” said Pushpa Kamal Dahal, who prefers his alias ‘Prachanda’ (the fierce one). “With our movement gaining people’s consensus, the anti-India ISI activity controlled by the Durbar is almost non-existent,” Prachanda said.
“When we initiated the armed movement against the corrupt rule in Nepal (in 1996),” Prachanda said, “ISI-type people offered us money and arms assistance. I resisted and our council agreed to refuse the assistance because we felt our movement would lose its Nepali-people-centric approach,” Prachanda said, explaining his reasons for turning down such assistance.
Even if Prachanda spent the last decade fighting for the dictatorship of proletariats, we defend his freedom of expression. But we feel that this statement demonstrates how thin Prachanda is willing to stretch himself to win the support of India to establish ‘new democracy’ in Nepal via his “Great Peoples’ Movement”.
Yes, Gyanendra Shah is a moron and he needs to be dealt with. Monarchy must be abolished in Nepal. But it is amazing why Prachanda thought it was right to complain about Gyanendra’s business practices with his Indian masters. It’s unfortunate that Prachanda found the idea of vomiting against ISI and Pakistan as the only way of doing chakari of Indians. He could have found better ways to do just that because we all know without the patronage of India, his “great revolution” in Nepal wouldn’t have come to the point where it is today. Plus, we can’t also reject the deep Indian influence in Nepali politics but Prachanda has shown us that the influence is far deeper that we ever imagined.
It is a matter of debate as to what extent you can undermine your relationship with one sovereign nation while trying to win support from the other. The best diplomacy is to put all friends at a reasonable distance. Behave equally. Yes, India is geographically near and we are India-locked. India is more important to us than Pakistan. We need to have special relationship with India. We that special relationship must not include naked chakari of Indians. We are a sovereign nation and we have our own independent foreign policy. There is no point in winning support from India at the cost of Pakistan or vice versa. We can win Indian support even without making Pakistan feel bad. We don’t need to be another Bhutan, do we?
It’s an open secret that there is deep anti-India sentiment in Nepal. With the exception of Bollywood and Sachin Tendulkar & Co, people hate India. To be specific, Nepalis hate the Indian establishment. That India establishment that always tries to prefers hegemony over mutual understanding and keeps on showing big brotherly attitude while dealing with small and weak neighbors like Nepal. Every time the trade treaty nears to expiration, we have one fear: how much will Indians exploit while renewing it. Every monsoon, we have to see our lands inundated because of Indian dams. Our boarders are encroached on a daily basis. That is why, even if they enjoy watching Aishwarya and Madhuri twisting their waists in the tunes of dola re dola, Nepalis quietly hate Indian establishment. They hate Indian establishment while appreciating Little Masters latest Century in the cricket pitch.
We all know very well that Nepal has always been the playground of regional and international intelligence agencies: be that Pakistani ISI or Indian RAW or American CIA. If there is ISI, there is RAW and if there is RAW there is ISI. Both agencies are hyper active in Kathmandu and several incidents in the past have proved this. It’s our problem that we are not being able to control those activities. It’s our inefficiency that they are playing as we are mutely watching the game. It’s not appropriate to take either side. We have only one side: our land must not be used against any nation on the planet. We should work hard and smart to make that sure. Just boasting in front of Indians about rejecting the ISI offer, that too in New Delhi, will not make Prachanda a qualified person to lead a party that is about to join the government of Nepal.