Many Indian newspapers today are filled with reports about the Indian police’s charge-sheet against Indian Maoist leader Kobad Ghandy containing a reference to a meeting with Nepali Maoist leader Pushpa Kamal Dahal Prachanda in 2006 as if Ghandy did a crime by meeting a leader who had, by then, left behind the underground politics for peace in Nepal. Nepali Maoists have obviously objected to the charge-sheet saying it had no relevance to the present situation. The question is: so what if Ghandy met Prachanda? They are both Maoists and its but natural for them to meet. When the meeting occurred, their parties were not declared terrorists by their respective states. Moreover, the biggest irony is, Nepali Maoists were in DELHI, New Delhi, even when they were the ‘most wanted terrorists’ in Nepal. India provided them with shelter. India brought the then terrorists Maoists of Nepal and other political parties together in Delhi to broker what became famous as 12-point agreement.
Delhi Police: Ghandy met Prachanda
The Delhi police on Friday filed a chargesheet against the banned CPI (Maoist) leader Kobad Gandhy saying that he had met Nepal Maoist chief Prachanda abroad and knew about the abduction and killing of Jharkhand cop Francis Induwar.
Filing the chargesheet before chief metropolitan magistrate Kaveri Baweja, the special cell alleged that Ghandy was involved in anti-national activities and was in Delhi to create a base for Maoist activities before his arrest in September last year. The police, in its 700-page chargesheet, informed the court that Ghandy had gone abroad to countries like Germany, Belgium and Nepal, where he met Prac-handa, to discuss the activities of his organisation. (contd.)
Prachanda’s press advisor Om Sharma dismissed claims of the Delhi police that 63-year old Ghandy went to Nepal to meet Prachanda. There is no truth in the reported meeting between Prachanda and Ghandy, Sharma told Press Trust of India. Narayan Kaji Shrestha, Maoist lawmaker and vice chairman of Nepal’s largest party, the Unified Communist Party of Nepal (Maoist), said highlighting an alleged meeting between Prachanda and arrested Indian Maoist leader Kobad Ghandy was a bid to create an unnecessary controversy. “During the 10 years that our party went underground and waged the People’s War, Prachanda met representatives from many communist parties in the world,” Shrestha told Indo Asian News Service. “The meetings occurred due to the parties sharing the same interests and ideologies.
“However, after our party signed a peace agreement and returned to mainstream politics in 2006, there has been no link between us and any other underground party. The alleged meeting, even had it taken place, is no longer relevant today.”
Since they signed a peace pact in 2006 and came overground, Nepal’s Maoists have been reiterating that they are no longer in touch with the Indian Maoists and do not support the armed movement in India in any way, calling the Indian insurgency “India’s internal matter”.
The Maoist denial came after Indian police in New Delhi Friday formally charged Ghandy, who was arrested last year, and accused him of having knowledge about his organisation’s unlawful activities, including the abduction and murder of a police official in eastern India’s Jharkhand state. Following the act, reports in India highlighted the charge mentioning that Ghandy had admitted meeting Prachanda in Nepal. However, Ghandy’s earlier admissions to his captors seem to bear out the Nepal Maoists’ contention. In January, he was reported as telling the Indian police that he had made four visits to Nepal between 2002 and 2006.
Nepal’s Maoist guerrillas, who waged an armed revolt for 10 years from 1996, signed a comprehensive peace agreement with the ruling parties in November 2006, following which they also took part in an election in 2008 and emerged as Nepal’s largest parliamentary party. Prachanda subsequently led the government for eight months, an act for which he and his party came under fire from the Indian Maoists, who accused them of being renegades and deviating from the “right path”.