From A World to Win News Service

Indian Government Grabs Another Top Nepali Maoist Leader

Revolutionary Worker #1237, April 25, 2004, posted at

We received the following from A World to Win News Service.

April 5, 2004. A World to Win News Service. Once again the Indian authorities have arrested a senior leader of the Communist Party of Nepal (Maoist). On 30 March, Indian police grabbed Mohan Baidya in Siliguri, a town in West Bengal, where he was undergoing treatment for eye cataracts. They also seized Narayan Bikram Pradhan, reported to be an Indian of Nepali origin, who was assisting him in his treatment. Comrade Baidya was charged with conspiracy and firearms violations. A local court turned the two men over to police custody for 15 days.

This arrest "has stunned our whole Party," declared CPN(M) Chairman Prachanda in a press statement the following day. He identified Comrade Baidya as a "veteran member of the Standing Committee" (the Party's highest body) and "in-charge of the eastern central command." The Party Chairman labeled the arrest "a pre-planned conspiracy to overshadow the main political issue" (the people's war led by the Party) "by imposing false weapons charges. The arrest of Comrade Baidya is not an occasional and simple incident but a product of intrigues between the Indian and Nepalese feudal rulers, in exchange for Nepal's rivers and natural resources. Our Party.demands respectful political conduct in the treatment of this old and veteran political personality."

Comrade Baidya, CPN(M) Chairman Prachanda continued, is "a theoretician on philosophy and aesthetics who has been persistently struggling for 40 years for the freedom of the Nepalese people from the clutches of feudalism and imperialism." He called for "human rights organizations and institutions, intellectual personalities, pro- people political forces and the broad masses of Nepal, India and the world to raise their voices for his safety, respectful treatment and release."

An international delegation of three German lawyers from Europe arrived in Chennai, India on March 24 to help inform and mobilize public opinion around the case of C. P. Gajurel (also known as Comrade Gaurav), another CPN(M) leader, who is facing extradition to Nepal since the Indian authorities arrested him last August on minor charges. The delegation was organized by the World People's Resistance Movement-Europe. In February, Indian police kidnapped two other CPN(M) leaders--Matrika Prasad Yadav and Suresh Ale Magar--who were immediately handed over to the Nepali military. The Indian government has repeatedly sent Nepalese revolutionaries back to the Kathmandu regime--known for torture and extra-judicial killings of its opponents--despite the fact that international law and treaties between India and Nepal prohibit such actions.

The CPN(M)-led people's war against the monarchy and its foreign backers has gained control of most of the countryside in predominantly peasant Nepal. According to the BBC, over 400 Maoist-led rebels assaulted and wiped out a police post on April 3. The authorities told journalists that the guerrillas killed at least nine police and that more than 20 others were missing after a three-hour assault launched about midnight on the police station in Yadukuwa, a village in the Dhanusha district about 300 km southeast of Kathmandu. The following day, a landmine blew up a Royal Army vehicle in Patlekhet village, 40 kilometres east of Kathmandu. The CPN(M) and the United People's Revolutionary Council have called for a countrywide bandh (general strike) April 6-8.