KATHMANDU, March 28: With the postponement of former CPN-UML leader Ram Chandra Jha´s joining the UCPN(Maoist) party as scheduled, this has now become a most talked-about issue within the UCPN (Maoist) over the last couple of days.
Debate rages on over Jha joining in the largest party, so much so that
the issue of giving full shape to the party´s central committee is being
overshadowed by his proposed entry into the party.[break]
Some Madhes-based leaders in the party are lobbying against allowing the
top party leadership to appoint Jha to the party´s top body while other
leaders want to give him a key role in the party so that the former
rebels could establish a strong foothold in the Madhesi community.
What is the main reason for the Maoist leaders centering on this issue,
even overshadowing the task of giving full shape to the central
The main reason is that the Maoist leadership wants to bring in a common
leader from the Madhesi community to fill the gap left after losing
Matrika Yadav. After Yadav´s departure, the Maoist party has had no
common leader in Madhes.
And also, once Jha joins up, the role of the existing Madhesi leaders
will be cut. The strong objection of the latter to Jha is connected with
this issue. The Maoist Madhesi leaders have been objecting to Jha,
saying the party should not give him a post higher than central
As things now stand, Prabhu Sah leads from the Baburam Bhattarai camp, Ram Kumar Yadav from the Narayan Kaji Shrestha faction and
Bishwanath Sah from the Dahal faction. They are all of the same rank.
Topmost leaders Krishna Dev Singh Danuwar and Mahendra Pasawan have
already joined the CPN-Maoist.
Earlier, Sah was the topmost leader among the Madhesi Maoists. He was a
politburo member. The rest of the Maoist Madhesi leaders were central
According to Maoist sources, Jha wants to be party secretary, and is
demanding party standing committee membership at minimum. He was
scheduled to join the UCPN (Maoist) Thursday at the Dhanushadham mass
gathering, where the party chairman himself was present to welcome him.
Calling up the dissident leaders of Madhes, Dahal had urged them not to
go against Jha´s joining the party. According to Ram Rijhan Yadav, Dahal
had said to them not to reject him on the eve of the elections.
Another reason for bringing Jha in is to prepare the environment for the
party in Madhes during the coming elections. "Chairman Dahal is trying
to bring Jha in, believing that his entry will help the party win the
election in Madhes," said Ram Rijhan Yadav.
How Maoists lost common leader in Madhes
Ram Briksha Yadav, the first central committee member of the Maoists
from the Madhesi community, was a popular teacher in Madhes and also a
Maithili singer. He was a common leader. But he was killed in his home
village of Barmajhiya on the eve of the Maoist people´s war.
After the launching of the insurrection, his whole family joined in the
war. His son and daughter-in-law were both killed. His wife Ram Kumari,
who was elected lawmaker from Dhanusa, was also killed, in an LP gas
cylinder explosion in Kathmandu.
After the death of Ram Briksha, the Maoists groomed Matrika Yadav to
take his place, and he was brought into the central committee. Though
Matrika was close to the Baidya faction he was a common Maoist leader
from the Madhesi community. But he opposed the formation of the
UCPN(Maoist) through a merger with the then CPN(Unity Centre) led by
Narayan Kaji Shrestha. He restructured the then CPN(Maoist).
After Matrika left, the Maoists have no common leader in Madhes. Among
the seniormost Madhesi leaders, Krishna Dev Singh Danuwar and Mahendra
Pasawan joined the Mohan Baidya led CPN-Maoist.
Now there are only Prabhu Sah from the Bhattarai faction, Bishwanath Sah
from the Dahal faction, and Ram Kumar Yadav from the Shrestha faction.
Among them, Bishwanath Sah is senior but they do not accept him as he
joined the UCPN (Maoist) only during the merger process.
"After Matrika, Prabhu has to be given the leadership of Madhes but
Bishwanath was chosen instead. Dahal does not trust Prabhu. Sah, Prabhu
and other leaders are trusted only by their own factions and are not
common leaders," said Ram Rijhan.