Sunday, July 22, 2012

Nepalese Revisionists in Unified CPN Maoist fall apart and decend to physical attacks on each other - the battle of the judas goats*


Explanation of Judas Goats

Paroxysm of anger upsets UCPN-M plenum

Factionalism rears its ugly head • Chair hurled at chairman • Bhattarai almost roughed up

KATHMANDU: Situation on the fourth day of the seventh plenum of the Unified CPN-Maoist today turned ugly after leaders and cadres close to Chairman Pushpa Kamal Dahal and Vice-chairman Baburam Bhattarai engaged in a scuffle over a minor issue of representation.

Tension ran high in the meeting hall after central committee member and Bhojpura State Committee Secretary Anjana Bishankhe, along with her team, began shouting slogans to stop a pro-Bhattarai leader Baliram Sah from airing his views. Dahal’s supporters stood against Sah, saying that he was not their representative. 

Situation could have turned worse had Devendra Poudel, a pro-Bhattarai leader, not stopped a pro-Dahal member, who was just about ready to rough up Bhattarai. Sources said a participant from Bajhang had even hurled a chair towards the rostrum, aiming at Chairman Dahal, but Dahal was unhurt. Pro-Dahal and pro-Bhattarai members were said to have engaged in throwing chairs at each other. 

Party Spokesperson Dina Nath Sharma denied that any such incident had taken place but admitted that there was tension between members over representation. The official bulletin released in the evening said ‘whatever was being talked out was but rumour’. 

Today’s meeting was then called off and leaders were escorted to Nepal Tourism Board, where they held a politburo meeting and decided to allow all the groups to air their views. Sources claimed that Dahal had asked his confidantes, including Janardan Sharma and Lokendra Bista who were said to be too furious, to calm down, saying ‘there was no ideological difference with Bhattarai’ and directed them to defend his political document instead. 

What a politburo member close to Bhattarai told this daily is, however, quite startling. “Dahal and Bhattarai suspect that Vice-chairman Narayan Kaji Shrestha is trying to fish in troubled waters. Bishankhe is close to Shrestha,” he said. 

Most of the speakers today vehemently criticised the government and Bhattarai, as prime minister, for signing BIPPA with India, ‘handing over’ TIA management to an Indian company and cracking down on squatters. The party cadres, especially those who are close to Dahal and Shrestha, were furious that Bhattarai had ‘forced PLA to surrender’. Leaders close to Bhattarai failed to defend the government despite they were prepared. This could have led to the scuffle, said a source. 

Meanwhile, Chairman Dahal today told Bhattarai that he was surprised by the activities of his cadres. Dahal said the agitated cadres were shouldering the agendas that have been raised by the Mohan Baidhya faction for long.

From The Indian Express:

Party colleague punches Bhattarai

Yubaraj Ghimire : Kathmandu, Sat Jul 21 2012, 01:36 hrs
Prime Minister Baburam Bhattarai was rescued by security personnel after a senior leader of the Unified Communist Party of Nepal-Maoists (UCPN-M) punched him during the national plenum of the party on Friday. 

A protective ring was formed around the prime minister who fell after he was attacked by Janardan Sharma, a former minister and central committee member of the party. The incident occurred when delegates belonging to the prime minister and party chairman Prachanda’s factions argued with each other over who should speak on behalf of provincial committees at the plenum. 

While Bhattarai supporter Baliram Saha was speaking, Sharma rushed to the dais and attacked him. Saha was booed by pro-Prachanda delegates and the situation quickly deteriorated when Sharma targeted the prime minister as well. In the chaos that followed, Bhattarai supporter Prabhu Saha, also a former minister, threw a chair at party chief Prachanda, who left the meeting in panic after adjourning the session. 

Bhattarai had been criticised earlier by members for “mortgaging national interest to India” by signing the Bilateral Investment Promotion and Protection Agreement (BIPPA) agreement. The prime minister was to respond to the charge on the last day of the meet. “You have signed unequal treaty with India, and you are planning to hand-over Nepal’s airports to India,” yelled Ishwari Bhandari, a member of the party’s Foreign Affairs Committee. 

The police took over the Rastriya Sabha Griha, the venue of the plenum, and top leaders were evacuated from the hall. The event, was a disappointment to both Prachanda and Bhattarai who had previously declared that the party was united and that factionalism had ended. 

Prachanda called for an emergency meeting of the politburo and summoned the plenum back promising that there would be two speakers each from Bhojpura province representing both the Bhattarai and Prachanda factions. The party decided to bar media representatives from entering the premises in the aftermath of the attack.

From The Himalayan Times:

"Dahal not attacked‚ Bhattarai not manhandled" 

KATHMANDU: In what seems to be a face-saving attempt, the UCPN-Maoist rubbished the media reports about the fracas in the party's ongoing plenum on Friday.

In the official bulletin issued by the plenum's publicity subcommittee on Friday evening, its co-ordinator Bishwa Bhakta Dulal claimed that there was an argument among the representatives from the Bhojpura State Committee only and the media reports that chairs were thrown at Chairman Pushpa Kamal Dahal and Politburo member Janardan Sharma manhandled Prime Minister Dr. Baburam Bhattarai at the closed session of party's ongoing plenum were incorrect.

Dulal claimed that the closed session, which kicked off at 11 am, was put off briefly after the argument over the presentation of report from the Bhojpura State Committee.

”The session resumed after the Politburo meeting assessed the problems seen in the hall and found solution," he said,"A decision has been made to study the differences seen in the Bhojpura State."

Leaders of six groups presented their reports today, while the remaining New State Committee will present its report tomorrow. Seven out of 14 groups had presented their reports at the extended meeting yesterday.

In the closed session that will resume at 11 tomorrow morning, party Chairman Dahal and Vice Chairmen Dr. Bhattarai and Narayan Kaji Shrestha will speak.

The seventh plenum will conclude tomorrow.

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