By Prem Sagar Poudel
There was the Panchayat System in Nepal at the time when New China was established. Panchayat System was a partyless system. It was very difficult to establish organization and develop relation with China in the public level during that time. Political parties were banned, and thus, communist ideology was not allowed. The government use to arrest many people on the charge of being supporter of the communist ideology. General people could not buy radio too without permission. Only VIPs had access to the radio. Radios, newspapers and medium of mass communications were beyond the general people’s reach. China was the dream country for the Nepalese people. Negative messages and terrible stories were spread about China among the Nepali people.
“Chinese people eat man’s meat; shoot aged people; they have to take government’s permission to have an egg too; they don’t have freedom” and so on were the story told in our society.
Some students had done higher education from the then USSR. Upon their return, they campaigned for the Russian revolution and socialist system secretly to the public in Nepal. Audience of Radio Masco had been increasing silently in the country. In 1975, China International Radio started to run programmes in Nepali language, then after, it became ease for the Nepali people to know better about China. China Pictorial was being published in Hindi language, later, it even started to publish in Nepali language and slowly Nepali people were able to get more information about China. Until this time, very few people in the country were of the view of promoting Nepal-China relations at the people to people level.
Chairman Mao’s “Red Book” which was printed in India was secretly distributed in villages without notice of the Nepal government. The number of communist was increasing and illusion about China was decreasing slowly. In the course of time, the Panchayat government was further enhancing relations with China.
Diplomats in the Chinese Embassy were very cordial on the Nepali commoners from such behaviours the Nepali people were highly impressed. Intellectuals were encouraged to establish the Nepal-China Friendship Association. Through this society, Nepali people started to get further information about China. The relations between the Chinese leaders and Nepal’s monarchs were always excellent, which were based on mutual benefit and trust. China has given full support to the Nepali monarchy, although, the Nepali monarchy was afraid of communism spreading in the country. Perhaps, this could be the reason for not allowing establishment of bilateral organizations. Even during such a period, Govinda Bhatta who was Nepali language expert in China, Madan Regmi, son of Dr Dilliraman Regmi, leader, Nepali Congress, Tamla Ukyab who had served as the consulate general in Tibet of China, Prem Sagar Poudel, among others, have made remarkable contribution in strengthening bilateral relations at the people to people level. Bhatta, Regmi, and Ukyab established the China Study Center, whereas, I established Nepal-China Mutual Co-operation Society in 1987.
Dr Ballav Mani Dahal was also very active in the public level. I was engaged in publishing newspaper, creative writings and article since 1987. The frequency of the exchange visits at both the government as well as people’s level was increased. In result, more and more Nepali people were acquainted about the real China. In such a way, the Nepali people’s attraction towards China started to increase.
After establishment of diplomatic relations between Nepal and China, China has noticeably helped in the development of Nepal, such as, establishment of different industries, roads etc. China had established Trolley Bus service in Kathmandu, Harisiddhi Bricks and Tile Industry, Bhaktapur Bricks Industry, Bansbari Leather Shoes Factory, Bhrikuti Paper Mill, Sugar Mills in Nawalparasi, Hetauda Garment Factory, Birendra International Convention Center, National Meeting Hall, Shunkoshi Hydropower Project, Kodari Highway, Prithivi Highway and so on. From such a support without any overt or covert interests, the Chinese leaders have been able to bag great admiration of the Nepali people.
On the other hand, India always played negative role and always helped those sectors which were aimed at weakening the existence of a sovereign and independent country Nepal. The Indian leaders always tried to spread negative feelings of the Nepali establishment to the commoners. They sponsored people to make the existing political system even by misusing Chairman Mao’s name, helped a small group of anti-government elements such as Baburam Bhattarai, Pushpakamal Dahal, Mohan Baidhya Kiran, Ram Bahadur Thapa ‘Badal’ etc. who had launched “people’s war”. In fact, the “people’s war was sponsored by India to defame Chairman Mao among the Nepali people.
Thousands of youths sacrificed their lives in the so-called civil war dreaming for their country’s development and move ahead along with China as the “war” was linked with the name of Chairman Mao. With the help and support of medium and lower class people, leading according to India’s plan the so-called civil war had ruined the nation very badly. India had played very cunningly as well as very cleverly using some opportunist Nepali leader on the expectations of the Nepali people and to defame China’s help for Nepal and the Nepali people.
The Maoist destroyed many infrastructures such as schools, government buildings, bridges, etc. which were made by Nepali industrial products. As a result, children were stopped from going to school. Ten years long so-called civil war had destroyed the education sector very badly. Rich families’ children went to India to study and along with them most of the people from parts of South Tarai sent their children too. Christian religion, which was banned by the Nepali monarchy, associated with different organizations and American-European run NGOs/INGOs reached in every village along with the Maoist cadres. The Maoist supporters escorted the militants from the Western countries in the northern part of Nepal where the Nepal government had banned foreign soldiers to visit those places. In the name of helping the Maoists more than eighteen thousands foreign soldiers had visited these places. Defaming the name of China’s great leader Mao, they had looted public property, made public homeless, murdered the civil cruelly by bursting eyes and chopping body parts. They killed wives, husbands, looted crops, foods, goats, buffalos, cows and many more. They raped beautiful girls by creating fear and terror in villages. They had disrepute the great leader Mao’s name in the views of Nepali people, whom Nepali people have a great deal of respect. The party led by Pushpa Kamal Dahal had destroyed the popularity and trust of communism. After attending the peace process, the Maoist’s selfishness and design have been exposed one after another.
At the beginning of so-called civil war by the Maoist, the price of cement was Rs 225 per bag with 50 kgs. There were only two cement factories in the country. After the Maoist joined the peace process, the price was increased upto Rs 625 per 50 kg. Two months later, it reached to 750 per 50 kg bag. Similarly, the iron rod’s price was increased upto Rs. 7000 from 2400 per 100 kg. All over the country, Indian invested cement and iron rod factories were opened. In the beginning of civil war, the Maoists were appeared as the strong critic of the Indian expansionism and hegemony. They blasted bombs in cinema halls for releasing Hindi movies in Nepal. They had punished traders for buying Indian goods and burnt Indian products. But after the peace process at their first mass assembly in Janakpur they claimed that five million (Indians) people were unable to get Nepali citizenship. At that program, Matrika Prasad Yadav demanded for Nepali citizenship for five million people and Dr. Baburam Bhattarai had demanded for republicanizing of the Nepal army by reducing its size. What is the meaning of republicanizing the Nepal Army, we have not understood. He had raised the issue of a separate Battalion of the Madheshi Army also.
We know, there is no caste and community of the Madhesi in Nepal. Those people, who lived in Tarai are known as Bhojpuri, Maithali, and Abadhi language spoken people, who are known as ‘Deshi’ in the last ten years.
Maoists had tried to create hate against China and the Chinese people among the Nepali people. Until now they have been conspiring to block Chinese people and Nepali people’s strong, close and mutual relations. Just opposite to it, China had given first priority and helped the Maoist after the collapse of monarchy in Nepal, that’s why Nepali people are confused.
China is the most trusted country for Nepal and the Nepali people. China has never done any work which keeps Nepal in problem. China is always for the betterment and development of Nepal and the Nepali people. China has never demonstrated her self-interests while supporting Nepal. China wants peace, stability and development in Nepal. China has been helping Nepal continuously. It is sad to say that Chinese aids and goods-will not be reciprocated by the Nepal governments properly. China’s aids have been misused by the Anti-China elements in Nepal.
The Nepal government is in the control of Indo-American powers. In the government, anti-Chinese power agents are only getting opportunity to become the prime-minister, minister and other important posts. They use Chinese aids and supports in the interest of anti-China powers. Nepali political parties have been creating false propaganda that China as the corrupt and opportunist country although China has helped and supported continuously without any interests. In result, the Nepali soil is being used by the anti-China elements. Now, China must recognize their true friends and be active in public level without any delay. If China will not give their attention in this issue, it will be harmful.
(The writer is the president of the NCMCS Nepal)
China should identify friends and foes
By Prem Sagar Poudel