History has made an irony on May 17, 2018, in the Communist Movement of Nepal. The duo: KP Oli and PK Dahal, by dissolving their respective parties, the CPN (UML) and CPN (MC), have built a new party through a joint meeting held at Prime Minister’s residence, Baluwatar. Party formation has been declared from a ‘Party Unity Declaration Programme’ organised in City Hall, Kathmandu. New party has been named as Communist Party of Nepal. The printed and digital media have publicised that a two-membered Chair, a 9-membered Secretariat, a 45-membered Standing Committee and a 441-membered Central Committee has been structured. The 6-point declaration issued jointly by KP and PK says that ‘Socialism-Oriented People’s Democracy’ will be their future political programme. And, Marxism-Leninism has been adopted as their guiding principle. Obviously, Maoism has been dropped.
This event has created debate in the whole political landscape of Nepal, in general, and the left political circle, in particular. The rival parliamentarian party, Nepali Congress, seems to have been scared of this unity and the vote it garners. Some of the people have weighed up this unity as a carrier of their fortune builder. There is no much enthusiasm on the part of general masses that support communist parties in Nepal. People, who have already seen governments formed by the erstwhile parties, are not so optimistic of this party unity. The one-sided rhetoric that the unity is a way towards stability and prosperity of the country and people has caused some confusion among the general masses. The cadres of Maoist Centre seem a little more enthused and those of UML seem to be sceptical of this unity.
In the history, the CPN (Maoist) and CPN (UML) were two different parties standing at opposite poles. The CPN (UML) had been pursuing right revisionist line since before its fourth congress and followed the path of peaceful competition under constitutional monarchy and parliamentarian multiparty system after 1990 mass movement. The CPN (Maoist) was a revolutionary party since its formation and engaged in revolutionary struggles against parliamentary system to establish new democratic republic in Nepal. In 1996, it initiated protracted people’s war and led the people’s liberation army to establish new democratic state power in Nepal. Quite the reverse, the CPN (UML) was involved in repression upon Maoists to defend the parliamentary system in force of the reactionary state army. UML leaders had signed blindly in the paper that the Congress government had proposed bounty on the heads of Maoist leaders. Many people in Nepal are aware of it. In short, these two parties were standing just at opposite poles since long before.
Whatever has been said before is not any subjective allegation of my own. The Maoist documents portray a clear picture of how did the Maoists look at the CPN (UML) yesterday. In a booklet named “Historical Documents” published by the CPN (Maoist) writes in page 71, paragraph 2, “In the situation when the right revisionist UML clique, which has degenerated into reaction but has not been exposed among the masses, on the one hand, and our party, which has appeared as a revolutionary alternative but has not yet been established practically among the people, on the other, the thing that draws special attention here is that Masal and the liquidationist groups are now attempting to confuse people along the same line as the right revisionist UML clique had done before.” This excerpt is self-evident and does not need any further elucidation.
A question arises, what made these two parties standing at diametrically opposite poles before arrive at one point now? In order for this to happen, either one of these two conditions — one, the UML has through a revolutionary transformation reached now to previous Maoist position or two, the Maoist Centre has through a counter-evolutionary degeneration reached now to previous UML position — was necessary to be fulfilled. Bluntly speaking, how can two pedestrians, who are walking towards two opposite directions, turn up along the same direction unless one of them makes a U-turn? It is an important question to take note of.
We come to hear that these two parties have arrived at one point because the political revolution has been completed with the establishment of republic in Nepal and what is now necessary is to collectively work for economic prosperity. It is an utter nonsense. Have the workers and peasants and the oppressed masses including, women, indigenous nationalities, Dalits, Madhesis, Muslims etc. got emancipated from the exploitation and oppression perpetrated by their domestic enemies: the bureaucratic and comprador bourgeoisie and feudal class? Has our country Nepal got liberated from the imperialist and expansionist oppression? Has Nepal come to witness the establishment of People’s Republic, which was said to be a minimum program of the erstwhile CPN (Maoist)? Has Nepal been free from the yoke of semi-feudal, semi-colonial and neo-colonial socio-economic condition? Has not Modi’s recent trip to Nepal helped uncover the national capitulationist behaviour of the Nepalese ruling parties and former’s expansionist attitude towards Nepal? However, the fact is that the internal and external oppression is getting terrible. Country’s economic dependency is doubling each day and quadrupling each night. The trade balance is skyrocketing and the export to import ratio is as high as 1:15. All this shows that a political revolution has not been accomplished but has become an urgent need to get rid of the challenges noted above.
What everyone knows is that UML was a reactionary party, neck deep in parliamentarianism, and it is so even today. It has not made any change in its previous ideological and political position. Regardless of this, unity has taken place between these two parties. How is it possible? It clearly means it is the result of the Maoist Centre embodying UML path. In other word, this unity has been possible only after the Maoist centre arrived at upholding UML position. It is the outcome of ideological degeneration of Maoist centre into UML, nothing other. The Maoist party that had raised arms against the reactionary state yesterday has now started speaking the language of repression upon revolutionaries by deploying the same army and police it had fought against in the past. This too, clarifies the question further.
Now a question arises, is it that the Maoist Centre has adopted UML line right now? No, it had begun before, but has been openly revealed to public now. The erstwhile CPN (Maoist) had started gestating UML line from the very day it had placed in party a document named ‘Democracy in the 21st century.’ It had already started pursuing the UML line by adopting Democratic Republic in the Chunwang meeting. Later, the election of constituent assembly, restructuring of state, 12-point understanding etc. had been the events that had laid one brick each to the process of Maoists embodying UML line. While arriving at the so-called comprehensive peace agreement, disarmament of the People’s Liberation Army, declaration of the end of people’s war, submission of the PLA into Nepalese army and the promulgation of reactionary constitution from the second constituent assembly, the course of Maoist Centre transforming ideologically and politically into UML had essentially completed. Since then, two parties MC and UML had existed only in name sake. The present unity is only the revelation of their common essence in open form. It is the open manifestation of Prachanda’s degeneration into reaction. This whole process has again justified Mao’s assertion that in the final analysis the revisionism is reaction.
The leadership that had portrayed a revolutionary image in the past has now submitted into a reactionary party through this unity process. No revolutionary the world over had wanted it to happen. But now, there is no way to deny it. In fact, this unity has logically brought to an end the state of affairs through which Prachanda could confuse honest cadres and people by showing the sacrifice he had made in history. Now, he will not be able to take benefit of the sacrifice he had made in the past and confuse the revolutionary people anymore. In the days to come, none will hear the terminologies like Maoism, people’s war, new democracy, revolution etc. in his speeches. He has made a rupture to the form that resembles with his essence. Now, no revolutionary people will be confused with him. He has clarified his side. In this sense, he must be thanked and this is the positive aspect seen in the unity between the MC and UML.
Our country is a very fertile land for communists. History is a witness; the Nepalese people have always stood in favour of revolution and change. Notwithstanding this, the leadership who had a revolutionary history has betrayed revolution and liquidated the party. Maoism does not remain a guiding ideology for this newly formed party and it has stopped talking about communism and proletarian internationalism. An abstract programme: “Socialism-oriented People’s Democracy” has been projected as their political goal. They have declared that peaceful parliamentarian struggle is their path of struggle to attain this target. The conscious Nepalese people who have been waging relentless struggle for new democracy, socialism and communism will not stand by this regression. Sooner or later, they will be exposed among the masses.
Finally, it points towards a possibility of new polarisation and broader unity among the revolutionaries, which is good for genuine Maoists and new democratic revolution in Nepal. The Maoist parties must take it seriously and work hard to bring entire revolutionaries into a single fold. The chances of revolutionary transformation remain more tangible during crisis and in the midst of enemy offensive, not in normal situation. The confusion spread by reactionaries does not last long. Their doom is not far. Let us grasp this, work hard and rise up to change this challenge into possibility; the future is bright.
May 17, 2018