Tag Archives: Baburam Bhattarai

Baburam Bhattarai: On Nepal’s Social Revolution

Maoist leader Dr. Baburam Bhattarai shouts anti-government slogans during a sit in protest in front of the main secretariat Singha Durbar in Kathmandu November 13, 2009. Maoist activists closed all the entrances to the main government secretariat on the second day of their protest against the president's reinstatement of the army chief. REUTERS/Shruti Shrestha

The following interview with Dr. Baburam Bhattarai, a leader of the Unified Communist Party of Nepal (Maoist), was conducted by members of the World People’s Resistance Movement (Britain & Ireland) who recently spent six weeks on a delegation in Nepal during August and September 2009 :


Nepal: Interview with Baburam Bhattarai

by WPRM (Britain)

WPRM: Thank you for meeting with us today. In your article in The Worker #4 ‘The Political Economy of the People’s War’ you write that “the transformation of one social system into another, or the destruction of the old by the new, always involves force and a revolutionary leap. The People’s War is such a means of eliminating the old by a new force and of taking a leap towards a new and higher social system.”

Why then did the Maoist party enter the peace process and attempt to change society through Constituent Assembly elections?

Baburam Bhattarai: This is a very important question related to the basic tenets of Marxism-Leninism-Maoism (MLM).

The basic motive force of history is the contradiction between the existing level of productive forces and the production relations within society. At a certain stage this contradiction sharpens and there is a break with the old relationship and a leap to the new one. We call this social revolution. That leap necessarily confronts a certain force, because every set of productive relations is backed by a state, and the state means basically the organised force of the army.

To break with the old mode of production and leap into a new one, you have to break all the relations within the state backed by the army. And that inevitably requires the use of force. This is a law of history and a basic principle of MLM which nobody can revise. If you revise or abandon it then you are no longer a Marxist. There is no question of our party ever ending this basic principle.

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The Andolan in Kathmandu and the Revolution to Follow

The following article by Gary Leupp is from CounterPunch. Please see his previous article, Nepal: The Tactic of General Insurrection:

“So far,” notes Peter Lee of the Asia Times, “Western media have reported remotely and somewhat uncomprehendingly on the massive demonstrations in Kathmandu led by the Communist Party of Nepal (Maoist), with a marked lack of interest. This perhaps reflects the shared desire of the Indian, Chinese and Western governments not to inflame the situation with excessive attention and rhetoric.” He refers to the two-day action in the Nepali capital Thursday and Friday.

But those demonstrations should be of enormous interest.  According to AsiaNews, “The second phase of the so-called ‘people’s movement-III’ saw more than 150,000 participants, including former Maoist guerrillas and United Communist Party of Nepal-Maoist (UCPM-M) members of parliament and militants, gathered around the  Singha Durbar, Nepal’s official seat of government.”

The Maoists virtually paralyzed the government in a stunning display of power. All the top Maoist leaders marched through the city, some meeting the police at the barricades and breaking through  to assume positions around Singha Durbar where they addressed the huge crowd.

It was overwhelming a peaceful, even festive andolan or mass demonstration, although there were some clashes with police. A senior Maoist leader, Krishna Bahadur Mahara, was among those wounded. He told Agence France-Presse, “We are now giving the government and other parties an opportunity to look into our demands.  The ball is in the government’s court.” The most powerful Maoist figure, former prime minister Prachanda, issued a sharper warning to the regime, giving it a seven-day ultimatum (to November 20) to restore “civilian supremacy” or face a general strike and other strong protests.

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The Tactics of General Insurrection and Protracted People’s War in Nepal

The following article is from Dissident Voice:

Nepal Protest

Nepal: The Tactic of General Insurrection
by Gary Leupp / November 2nd, 2009

[N]ow we are focusing on the mass movement… [N]ow we [can] really practice what we have been preaching. That means the fusion of the strategy of PPW [Protracted People’s War] and the tactic of general insurrection. What we have been doing since 2005 is the path of preparation for general insurrection through our work in the urban areas and our participation in the coalition government.

– Maoist leader Baburam Bhattarai, interview with the Britain-based World People’s Resistance Movement, October 26, 2009

Today (November 1) Nepal’s Maoists initiate, with torch rallies in Kathmandu, a mass movement to bring down the regime. This is the regime that succeeded the one their chair Prachanda headed as prime minister from August 2008 to May 2009–a compromise arrangement, always understood to be temporary and transitional, that collapsed when the Nepali Army refused to take orders from the Maoist prime minister.

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Conversation with a Maoist Revolutionary: Baburam Bhattarai to speak in Washington DC

Dr. Bhattarai speaks at a mass rally in Nepal

The Sigur Center for Asian Studies Presents:

Title: Conversation with a Maoist Revolutionary

In the Sigur Center’s Lecture Series on Subnational Asia

Speaker: Dr. Baburam Bhattarai, Minister of Finance, Nepal

Baburam Bhattarai is Nepal’s Finance Minister. He was the second in command and chief ideologue of the Maoist guerillas, who led a decade-long armed uprising against the state and the monarchy.  Dr. Bhattarai was instrumental in bringing his party to a successful peace process. Dr. Bhattarai is a senior member of the Communist Party of Nepal-Maoist’s Secretariat, the highest governing body of the party. After just one month in the Finance Ministry, he has released an ambitious 2009 budget aimed at poverty alleviation.  He is the author of The Nature of Underdevelopment and Regional Structure of Nepal: A Marxist Analysis (2003), Politico-Economic Rationale of People’s War in Nepal (1998) and Nepal’s Principles of Revolution. Bhattarai received his B.A. in Architecture from Chandigarh (India) in 1977 and completed his Ph.D. from Jawaharlal Nehru University (New Delhi) in 1986.

Date: Thursday, October 9, 2008

Time: 11:30 – 12:45 pm

Place: Lindner Family Commons, The Elliott School of International Affairs, 6th Floor, 1957 E Street, NW

RSVP: Please RSVP with your name, organization/GW affiliation, and e-mail to gsigur@gwu.edu by Tuesday, October 7, 2008.

Baburam Bhattarai on New Democratic Revolution and Prachanda Path

This video first went up on the Revolution in South Asia website. Below is an article by Bhattarai in the Communist Party of Nepal (Maoist) newspaper, The Red Star. Dr. Bhattarai is a top leader of the CPN-Maoist and the Finance Minister of the revolutionary coalition government of the new Nepal.

Prachanda: leader of the new era

- Baburam Bhattarai

Baburam Bhattarai speaking at a mass rally.

Dr. Baburam Bhattarai speaking at a mass rally.

Today, the history of Nepal will be written in gold. We have ended the epoch of the rule of feudalist monarchy, and entered into the era of Federal Democratic Republic. Unfortunately, for four months we were unable to elect our chariot driver for the new era. At the moment, we can hear the cries and excuses of the defeated. We know that the old train driver who drove the train for many years had become too old to drive. But he refused to hand over the authority to the new younger driver. Instead, he tried to pull the train back.      

It was not that the Maoist could not assemble a national consensus; rather they were denied the possibility of forming a national consensus. Who were creating these obstacles? Yet, by overcoming these obstacles, the process is moving ahead. The march of history cannot be stopped. Listen, friends from Congress; this is not the time to weep and cry, instead it is time for all to respect and follow the verdict of history. During a certain period of history, the NC also was also more or less against the monarchy; the NC also struggled for democracy. Therefore, we worked together with the NC since the 12 point understanding; the Comprehensive Peace Accord; and the election of the CA up to the declaration of the Federal Democratic Republic. However, a new era demands a new leadership; the Nepalese people have demanded a new leadership for a new Nepal through the electoral mandate. The new leadership should have come into being right after the people’s verdict, but it was prevented from doing so. Because of this, we were forced to live without any leadership for four months. Continue reading