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Nepal Maoists divided over response to India

world Updated: Feb 05, 2013 00:11 IST
Utpal Parashar
Utpal Parashar
Hindustan Times
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Departure from 'protracted peoples' war' to 'capitalist revolution' is the main theme of the ongoing convention of Nepal's ruling Maoists. But India too is high on the agenda.

The former rebels who viewed India as the number one enemy earlier are now divided on whether to continue that policy or adopt a softer approach towards the southern neighbour.

Reports say disagreements between chairman Pushpa Kamal Dahal 'Prachanda' Prachanda and vice-chairman Narayan Kaji Shrestha on policy towards India delayed the start of the session.

As opposed to Prachanda and his aides who want the party to adopt a softer policy towards India, Shrestha and several others want the party to maintain a hard stance towards New Delhi.

"We are in government. We can't use provocative words (against neighbouring countries) in the chairman's political document," Kumar Poudel, a leader close to Prime Minister Baburam Bhattarai told 'The Kathmandu Post'.

Shrestha had even threatened to present a separate political document if Prachanda's paper failed to include 'national independence' - which in Maoist parlance means freedom from New Delhi's interference.