No link with Kobad Ghandy now: Nepal Maoists

Last Updated: Saturday, February 20, 2010 - 14:58

Kathmandu: Nepal`s former Maoist guerrillas have objected to the Indian police`s chargesheet against Indian Maoist leader Kobad Ghandy containing a reference to a meeting with their chief Pushpa Kamal Dahal Prachanda, saying it had no relevance to the present situation.
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 said. "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 on 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".

IANS



First Published: Saturday, February 20, 2010 - 14:58

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