Workers, Oppressed peoples, and Nations of the World Unite!
A Brief Introduction of the
Communist Party of Nepal (Marxist-Leninist)
1. Nepalese Society
Nepal is a developing country in South Asia, along the lap of the great Himalayas, with a semi-feudal and semi-colonial society. It has relatively a small size and a population of nearly 28 millions. It is one of the ancient nations of the world having a recorded history of more than two thousand years. Social studies have factually proved that Nepal has undergone through the matriarchal, slave-owning and feudal social systems. Even during the eight decades since its inception in 1930’s, capitalism has only attained a primary stage of development in Nepal. National capitalism has not yet developed sufficiently and become strong. A comprador and bureaucratic capitalism having a nature of dependent capitalism has started to take a shape in a number of ways because of influences and interferences of imperialism and its financial institutions. Nepal is fettered by several treaties and agreements which are unequal and against its national interests. Indian hegemonism and U S imperialism have been playing conspicuous roles in this respect.
2. Present Situation and the Nepalese Revolution
At present, Nepal is in a stage of people’s democratic revolution, i.e. a new democratic revolution having following two primary tasks: i) completing the democratic revolution by abolishing the remnants of feudalism in various forms and shades and ii) completing the national salvation from the yoke of hegemonism and imperialism and consolidating the national independence thereby.
As an outcome of the April political revolution led by the alliance of seven left and democratic political parties and the Communist Party of Nepal (Maoist), on the base prepared mainly by the ten year long political armed struggle waged by the CPN (Maoist), the direct regressive and autocratic rule of king Gyanendra Shah collapsed and the parliament was reinstated in April 24, 2006. The first meeting of the elected Constituent Assembly overthrew the feudal monarchy of Shah Dynasty and established the Democratic Republic of Nepal on May 28, 2008. To actively work for the completion of the already started peace process and establish a stable peace in the society and to mobilize the masses in bringing progressive democratic changes in the Nepalese society and federal democratic restructuring of the state with the elements of inclusive democracy and institutionalizing them in a new constitution to be drafted and promulgated by the Constituent Assembly is the tactical line of the Party. As the feudalism, bureaucratic capitalism, hegemonism and imperialism still hold sway over the society, a social revolution is still a necessity to demolish the reactionary state power completely and establish a people’s democratic republic so that the people's democracy can be practiced as well as the genuine national liberation can be realised and the national independence be consolidated. This is a revolutionary strategic goal of the Party.
3. Communist Party of Nepal
Communist Party of Nepal was established in April 22, 1949 in the initiation of late Comrade Pushpa Lal Shrestha. During 60 years after its founding, great changes have taken place not only in national and international situation but also within the World Communist Movement itself. Nepalese Communist Movement, which remained unified for the first decade, suffered serious splits after 1960. In the process of splits and reunification, Communist Party of Nepal (Marxist-Leninist) was formed in December 26, 1978, which renamed itself as CPN (Unified Marxist-Leninist) in November 1990, after its unification with another communist party, namely CPN (Marxist). In another specific situation of the split on some serious ideological and policy differences within the party, CPN (M-L) was re-established in March 5, 1998, which has been under reconstruction since February17, 2002.
4. Communist Party of Nepal (Marxist-Leninist)
Communist party of Nepal (M-L), established in December 26, 1978, is the vanguard political party of the Nepalese proletariat, representing the interests of the broad masses of people and those of the nation. This party accepts Marxism-Leninism and Mao Zedong thought as its guiding ideology. It regards the experiences of people’s democratic revolutions of various countries of the world, e.g., China, Korea, Vietnam, Cuba, Laos, Cambodia, etc. Especially those of the new democratic revolution of China as well as those of the Korean revolution under the guidance of Juche idea as important references. This party believes in proletarian internationalism and progressive patriotism based on the opposition of hegemonism and imperialism, implements Marxism- Leninism in the concrete situation of the country in a creative way and continuously enriches itself by its own as well as the revolutionary experiences of the world in general.
5. Revolutionary Programmes, Strategy and Tactics
The maximum and minimum programmes of the Party are socialism-communism and the people’s democracy respectively. People’s democracy is a state of People’s Republic under the leadership of the proletariat, representing the interests of workers, peasants and all democratic classes and strata of the society and defending independence and the sovereignty of the nation. After the completion of people’s democratic revolution and construction, Nepalese society will gradually move towards socialist revolution and construction under the leadership of the proletariat. In this respect the party has realized that it must pay attention to the global expansion of democratic values and the recent lessons and experiences gained in course of building scientific socialism in various countries and learn from them creatively.
The Nepalese democratic revolution will be accomplished by the mobilization of the organized forces of the people under the leadership of the working class, building the worker-peasant alliance and organizing the support and participation of democratic, patriotic and justice-loving Nepalese people of different classes and strata as well as by mobilizing the international support and solidarity. It adheres to the Marxist-Leninist principles of democratic revolution in the developing countries and opposes ‘right’ and ‘left’ opportunism of all shades. CPN (ML) opposes hegemonism and imperialism. It also opposes uni-polarism and encourages multi-polarism in the contemporary world politics.
The Party accepts socialist countries like China, Cuba and Korea, new democratic Indo-Chinese countries e.g. Vietnam, Laos and Cambodia, progressive countries of the third world, peoples’ democratic struggles, all forms of anti-imperialist and progressive struggles of the world over and the friendly countries struggling against uni-polarism, imperialism and hegemonism as the natural allies, though in different degrees, of the Nepalese democratic revolution. The Party supports the just struggles of people of every country for the protection of global environment and bio-diversity.
The Party has summed up that to march forward to attain the revolutionary goal of people’s democracy by accomplishing progressive democratic changes through several political revolutions is the characteristic of the Nepalese revolution. This characteristic of the Nepalese revolution has been decided mainly by the geo-political positioning of the country. It has also summed that in a favorable national and international situation the combination of people’s peaceful struggles, mass-uprisings and rural area-based people’s armed struggle will become the main vehicle of revolutionary change in Nepal. These conclusions have been justified by the experiences of political and armed struggles of Nepal till the present day.
6. Present Revolutionary Responsibilities
CPN(M-L) maintains that the following four agenda are the present revolutionary responsibilities of Nepalese people and the progressive political parties over here: i) to complete the already commenced peace process on the basis of previously accepted understandings agreements, ii) to implement the progressive socio-economic changes brought about by the April political revolution, iii) to draft and promulgate a federal republican, inclusive and progressive democratic constitution based on the universally accepted democratic values and forms suitable to the Nepalese condition and iv) to restructure the state democratically and carefully design a federal structure and system for the country which will suit to its characteristics and needs. The proposal put forth by the Party on the fourth agenda is briefly mentioned below.
Nepal is a nation having many nationalities of different ethnic stocks i.e. Aryans (the Khash and the Madheshi nationalities), Kirants (around fifteen nationalities), Mangols (around ten nationalities), Dravidians (the Jhangar and the Santhal nationalities) and a few others. Besides this, there is an age-old caste-system within the three nationalities, namely- the Madhesi, the Khash and the Newars. The caste-system stratifies the people and the people in the lowest layer of the caste system, i.e. the socalled untouchable or the Dalits are the most excluded, oppressed and exploited masses in the society. They urgently need a special political, social and economic upliftment programme to be implemented for their emancipation. It is a country of many religions having Hinduism, Buddhism, Kirant and Islam as the major native ones, where the people speak more than ninety languages and dialects. Nepal has a unique culture, the Nepali culture blended in the afore-mentioned diversities.
In order to achieve the tactical goal of the Party, after a deep study of the colorful ethno-social background and the strategic geo-political situation of the country, problems of economic development and the state of discrimination faced by most of the nationalities (ethnicities) and their aspirations, the Party has arrived at the proposal that the new federal structure should have at maximum, six provinces stretching north-south, encompassing the Himalyan, mid-hill and the low-land Terai belt without disturbing the settlements of any ethnic communities over there. Under the provincial governments, all nationalities (ethnicities) medium and small, should be provided with their own autonomous units of different geographic sizes according to their settlements in the particular location, where their population is in strong majority. CPN (ML) proposes that it will be the most suitable model of providing identities to all nationalities (ethnicities) living within the country and abolishing all forms of discriminations and inequalities in practice till now and strengthening the unity of the land and the people. All autonomous ethnic units will be governed by their proportionately elected councils and each ethnic council will send its representative/s to its provincial parliament according to a scientifically made law of representation. Moreover those ethnic units will send their elected deputies to the upper house of the federal parliament, the federal National Assembly.
Along with this, the party has proposed the mixed member proportionate representation (MMPR) system of election in federal and provincial level, bi-cameral federal legislature and directly elected prime-ministerial system of governance at the federal center. All federal provinces will have uni-cameral legislatures and elected provincial governments. All necessary legal and other arrangements will be made so that all political, administrative, security and judicial bodies in all levels of Federal Nepal will be gradually transformed into proportionately inclusive bodies as per ethnicity and gender. The Party has proposed a federal system having a strong federal center, powerful provinces with rights provided by the constitutionally acknowledged list and autonomous local bodies and all ethnic units constituted to high-light the ethnic identities within the provinces. It foresees that a federal system of cooperative and developing nature will be the most suitable one to Nepal.
7. CPN (M-L) on the Rise
Communist Party of Nepal (M-L) is a revolutionary political party, which operates under the organizational principle of democratic centralism. It implements the system of collective leadership and individual responsibility. On the one hand it respects the individual freedom of the members and, on the other; it strictly implements the organization discipline of the party very consciously. This party takes criticism and self-criticism as a continuous process of correcting mistakes within the party ranks and revitalizing itself.
This party has been gradually increasing its role in the national politics since the third National Conference organized in 1-3 May, 2003. Because there have been repeated splits in the communist movement of Nepal for various reasons since 1960, it is accepted that one objective of the Communist party of Nepal (M-L) is to play a modest role in fulfilling the responsibility of unifying the divided Communist movement in a principled way, in the course of working together with all the Communist Party groups active in the country.
The Communist party of Nepal (M-L) carries forward the revolutionary traditions of the Communist Party of Nepal established 60 years ago. It considers Comrade Pushpa Lal Shrestha as the pivot of its ideological leadership, who guided the Communists of Nepal to work together with the native progressive democratic forces to push ahead the democratization of the society. It is now engaged in the painstaking task of creating a nationwide organizational network among the workers, peasants, Dalits, the other toiling masses and various marginalized communities as well as all the democratic classes and patriotic strata of Nepalese society along with mobilizing them to institutionalize the progressive changes of the society at present. To safeguard the people's unity and national integrity, the Party opposes all kinds of discriminations among different nationalities, communities, religions and cultures. The Party is in favour of the secular state and freedom of religions and at the same time it is against the religious conversions on various temptations and pressures.
To insure a qualified collective leadership of the party, a system of National Conference, Central Committee and the Central Council has been set up at the central level while zonal bureaus in eastern, mid-northern, mid-southern, western and far-western regions of the country provide leadership in the party work in all 75 districts of the country. There is a bureau to look after the party-work abroad. Similarly at the central level, departments have been formed to look after the affairs of party organization and discipline, mass organizations, party education, publicity work, fund-raising and management, ethnic and cultural issues, state affairs and the foreign affairs, in order to make the party capable in handling all organizational, political and social problems and agenda effectively.
Under the leadership of the Party, Federation of Nepalese Progressive Trade unions (FENEPT), All Nepal Progressive Peasants’ Association, All Nepal Progressive Women’s Association, All Nepal National Free Students’ Union (fifth), Progressive Youth Federation Nepal, Intellectual and Professional Organization, Democratic Literature and Art Forum, Progressive Culture Group, Central Liaison Forum, Nepal Progressive Teachers’ Association and Progressive lawyers’ Association have been set up with a view to push ahead the democratic revolution by mobilizing the masses of various classes, strata and professions.
The membership of the Communist Party of Nepal (M-L) has reached 5,000 and it has spread its work among the Nepalese people living abroad, too. The party bagged 8 seats in the Constituent Assembly elections of April 2008, through the proportionate representation system. The Central Committee elected by the fifth National conference (17-20 May 2009, Kathmandu) has been leading the Party since then. It is on the way to fulfil the important responsibility of holding the Seventh National Congress of the Party in due course of time.
22 April 2010
(Revised in concerned places of the text according to the decisions of the Seventh meeting of the fifth Central committee of the Party held on 7-9 Feb, 2011 and the text slightly improved, too)