What lessons should Maoists in India draw from the stunning Maoist win in Nepal?*
The two are different. The slogan of the Maoist party in Nepal was that the monarchy should be abolished. That is not the agenda of the revolutionary parties in India. In fact, the Nepal Maoist party at present is not talking about a new democratic revolution. It is talking about a Constitution in which there will be no king. Here, the agenda is — power to the people. It
is the agenda of land to the tiller, it is the ownership of the worker over the factory. It is almost like alternative politics.
While commenting on the Maoist victory, Sitaram Yechury said that if you stick to the path of democracy, you can ride to power.*
How does Sitaram Yechury define democracy? If he thinks parliamentary democracy is democracy, why does his party carry the slogan of people's democracy? That means there is a difference between parliamentary democracy and people's democracy. Why is the CPM using an axiom called people's democracy? Since he joined parliamentary politics, Yechury can say anything. There is no difference between the Congress, the BJP and the CPM now, particularly after Nandigram and Singur.
But what about the larger point that you can be a stakeholder without the use of violence and guns?*
It's not the question of violence. It is the State which is using violence. Revolutionaries are resisting that violence.
But they are also armed…*
The people will be armed because unless you have arms, you cannot resist any violence. When the State oppresses and represses with arms, people also have to take up arms.
But it's not only resistance, innocents are also attacked.* Those are details.
But it's an important detail.* The oppressed have never come to power without force. Elections are not fought on the question of violence and non-violence. Elections were fought in Nepal on the larger question of whether there should be a king or not. I accept that the vote is a popular vote but it was a vote against the king.
But they are in a position to make policy changes.*
We have to wait and see what happens to the democratic revolution programme. Whether the new regime in Nepal will be anti-feudal and anti-imperialist. For that matter, will it be antifeudal as Sitaram Yechury may claim Bengal is.
Yechury said while the Nepal Maoists have given up arms, their counterparts in India continue to kill.*
I think even Prachanda will not accept when Yechury says he has "given up arms". The arms were kept under UN supervision. Nine years ago, they were taken up to achieve the new democratic revolution. Unless that is achieved, the revolution will not be withdrawn. And of course terms like "counterparts" are not Marxist terms. The Maoist party of Nepal is different from the Maoist party of India.
*So you feel Maoists here need to continue with the armed struggle?*
I say that the Indian Maoist will resist State violence. State violence is now supported by imperialist violence. So there is more need. Till yesterday, it was only against landlords and capitalists. But after Iraq and Afghanistan, we see the interference of imperialism. What is happening in Chhattisgarh? In whose interest is the Indian State fighting? It is fighting
in the interest of the multinational corporations and American imperialism. It has created the Salva Judum and is killing people. What will the Adivasis do then? Only struggle will bear fruit.
From Tehelka Magazine, Vol 5, Issue 16, Dated April 26, 2008*