THT 10 years ago: Dev Gurung questions govt’s commitment to talks

Kathmandu, June 13, 2006

A Maoist leader and member of the Maoist-Government talks team Dev Gurung today raised doubts over the government’s commitment to hold talks for “constructive purposes”.

“We do not know whether the government really wants to hold talks or only buy time to remain in power,” the Maoist leader said at a programme organised by the All Nepal Women’s Association-Revolutionary (ANWA-R), the women’s wing of the Communist Party of Nepal (Maoist).

On one hand, the seven political parties reinstated the House, which was not an agenda of the mass movement, he said.

On the other, the parties have not yet made concrete efforts for holding the election to a Constituent Assembly (CA), a major agenda of the 12-point understanding and the people’s movement.

“Some clear indications have made us suspect about the parties’ commitment. Suspicion over the parties’ intention has increased in recent days,” he said.

Laying stress on the need to hold talks, “a phase of the movement”, immediately, he said: “The party is now concentrating on this phase.” “We have passed several phases of the revolution in a decade.

Now we believe that monarchy and feudalism can be abolished through talks,” he said.

Rebel FM stations still underground

Even after the political changes, all the Maoist-run FM stations are run from underground.

Many of the valley people are still unaware of the rebel-run radio that resumed operation recently. The Maoist cadres are the regular listeners of the Radio Janaganatantra Nepal 95.1Mega Hertz.

The Maoists had five mobile FM stations. One is still not working. Seti Mahakali, also known as Sema Regional Broadcasting service, covers the west, while Bheri-Karnali (Bheka) covers the two zones and the Rapti.

The one at Rapti has a special broadcasting service. Ishwor Chandra Gyawali, coordinator of the Valley Broadcasting Service of the Maoists, claimed that it is some kind of a record that they have run the FM mobile stations underground for nearly five years.

The Tigers of Sri Lanka who also run FM stations have fixed FM stations. The mobile FM broadcasting in the valley is run by a special central command, designed to cover the eastern, western and southern parts of the valley and adjoining districts.

The security forces had jammed the valley broadcasting of the Maoists.

They stopped doing it a few weeks ago. Gyawali claimed that the radio had played a crucial role in creating disaffection towards the monarchy and in making the villagers aware of their rights.

The radio airs programmes on communist ideology, revolutionary songs, stories related to the “martyrs” of the people’s war and, of course, news.