ARMED STRUGGLE: Young Communist Party of India (Maoist) cadre at a training camp inside the jungles in Jharkhand State. ‘Our attempt will always be to target the enemy who is engaged in war against us,’ party Spokesperson Azad said. Photo: AFP
In an exclusive interview to The Hindu, Azad, Spokesperson of the Communist Party of India (Maoist), answers in writing questions on his party’s attitude to dialogue with the Union government.
The written questions were sent in the second week of March and the answers received at the end of the month. The 11,400-word text of the interview is available at The Hindu‘s website.
An edited excerpt:
There have been statements in recent months by government and Maoist leaders saying they favour talks but each side seems to lack seriousness. There has also been an element of theatre, with Kishenji and P. Chidambaram exchanging statements through the media. Could you clarify whether Kishenji’s statements can be treated as authoritative pronouncements of the CPI (Maoist) central leadership in pursuance of a national strategy? Or are these tactical announcements by him keeping only the specifics of the West Bengal situation in mind.
Our party leadership has been issuing statements from time to time in response to the government’s dubious offer of talks. But to generalise that there is lack of seriousness on both sides does not correspond to reality. To an observer, exchanging statements through the media does sound a bit theatrical. But the stark fact is the lack of seriousness has been the hallmark of the government, particularly of P. Chidambaram. It is Mr. Chidambaram who has been enacting a drama in the past four months, particularly ever since his amusing 72-hour-abjure-violence diktat to the CPI (Maoist) last November. As regards Kishenji’s statements, they should be seen with a positive attitude, not with cynicism. Though our Central Committee has not discussed our specific strategy with regard to talks with the government at the current juncture, as a Polit Bureau member, Comrade Kishenji had taken the initiative and made a concrete proposal for a ceasefire. Whether his statements are the official pronouncements of our Central Committee is not the point of debate here. What is important is the attitude of the government to such an offer in the first place. Our Central Committee has no objection to his proposal for a ceasefire. Read the rest of this entry »