[Reader-list] Fwd: [YSC] Letters from P. Chidambaram and CPI (Maoist) regarding the possibility of Peace dialogue

Rakesh Iyer rakesh.rnbdj at gmail.com
Sun Jun 27 19:57:05 IST 2010

---------- Forwarded message ----------
From: Nityanand Jayaraman <nity68.new at gmail.com>
Date: Sun, Jun 27, 2010 at 7:54 PM
Subject: [YSC] Letters from P. Chidambaram and CPI (Maoist) regarding the
possibility of Peace dialogue
To: youthforsocialchange at googlegroups.com,
campaign-for-justice-and-peace at googlegroups.com

*Courtesy : Countercurrents.org*

Letters from P. Chidambaram and CPI(Maoist)
to Swami Agnivesh regarding the possibility of dialogue

*By Sanhati *

25 June, 2010
*Sanhati* <http://sanhati.com/articles/2506/>

[Ever since Operation Green Hunt was launched, there have been efforts by
different sections of the civil society to enable a dialogue between the
Indian government and the CPI(Maoist). Though several unsuccessful attempts
for dialogue have been made, what is striking is that different government
officials and ministers have continuously dismissed any positive response
from the CPI(Maoist), as empty posturing or attempts to gain time for
regrouping. In the midst of all this, Operation Green Hunt has of course
continued, bringing misery to the lives of the people in the east-central
forested regions of the country.

However, recently, a fresh initiative for peace and justice has come forth
with attempts by Swami Agnivesh to bring both sides to the negotiation
table. In this regard, the Home Minister P. Chidambaram had written a letter
to Swami Agnivesh laying down the conditions from the government’s side for
the talks. Although the letter was supposedly confidential, it was leaked to
the press, apparently from the home ministry, to seemingly portray a picture
of sincerity on the part of the government.

It turns out that, more than a week back, the CPI (Maoist) had responded to
this initiative by writing their own letter to Swami Agnivesh, which
described the suitable conditions from their side for joining the talks.
However, quite mysteriously, there was no discussion in the media regarding
the Maoist response and there were rumours that the government was
attempting to suppress it. With apprehensions that this initiative would
also loose steam, the CPI (Maoist) letter has also now reached different
sections of the media.


Letter from Azad, spokesperson of CPI(Maoist), to Swami Agnivesh

*Click here to read the letter in pdf

May 31, 2010

Regarding the proposal for talks made by Mr. P. Chidambaram in his letter to
Swami Agnivesh

Dear Swami Agniveshji,

We heard that you and other democratic intellectuals had gone on a peace
march in Dantewada in the first week of May 2010 braving the disruption
organized by the goons of the BJP and Congress. You might have realized how
the state government and the Centre are determined to sabotage any attempt
to bring peace to the region and to prevent anyone from making efforts in
that direction. We appreciate the efforts of well-meaning intellectuals and
social activists like you to bring peace to the region. We also appreciate
the efforts made by you to convince the Union Government to come forward for
a cease-fire and dialogue with our Party which had prompted the Union Home
Minister to state the Government’s position on the issue.

We had gone through the letter written to you by the Union Home Minister P.
Chidambaram dated May 11, 2010 which mentions the Government’s position on
the peace process and its offer for talks with the CPI(Maoist). The essence
of his letter is that “the CPI(Maoist) should announce they will abjure
violence” and specify a date from which they will not indulge in violent
activities; should “stop all violent activities” from that date for 72
hours, and that the security forces will not conduct any operations against
the CPI(Maoist); that “talks” would begin “sometime during the period of 72
hours when there is no violence”; and that the CPI(Maoist) should “continue
to maintain its position of no violence until the talks are concluded.”

We had already stated publicly our Party’s position on cease-fire and talks
with the government several times in the past. We wish to reiterate our
Party’s position once again in light of the proposals made by Mr.
Chidambaram in his letter sent to you.

Firstly we hold the opinion that the cease-fire should be mutual. You are
well aware of the continuous persecution of ordinary innocent people by the
security forces in all the regions where the latter are deployed as part of
the Operation Green Hunt. Not a day passes without an incident of murder,
rape, abduction, torture of the adivasis and destruction of their property
or stealing their belongings by these so-called security forces. How can the
people or the Party and its various wings get confidence that the Government
is serious in its intent for peace when it allows its forces to indulge in
heinous atrocities on innocent unarmed people, when the government itself
allows the suspension of all basic democratic rights of the citizens and
consigns their own Constitution to the dust-bin? In such a situation it is
necessary on the part of the government to prove its seriousness regarding
the peace process by first halting its operations against innocent unarmed
people and unequivocally stating that it is ready to observe cease-fire
simultaneously with the CPI(Maoist) starting with a specified date. The
practical measure to really ensure peace is the declaration of mutual
cease-fire for a definite period, say, 2 or 3 months, to start with.
Insisting that the CPI(Maoist) should declare that it will abjure violence
is an unsound and unreasonable proposal. It implies that the Maoists are
indulging in violence while the Government and its security forces have been
fighting for peace. The facts actually are vice versa.

It is the paramilitary, police, private vigilante gangs sponsored by the
government that are unleashing violence on the people on an hourly basis and
the people are compelled to retaliate for their own survival. The Party and
the PLGA too are compelled to undertake counter-offensive operations in
their self-defence and in defence of the people. Hence it is the Government
that has to instill confidence among the people and the Party cadres about
its seriousness by first halting its offensive operations and attacks on the
people instead of asking the Maoists to unilaterally declare that they will
abjure violence.

Even more amusing is the time period of 72 hours which means just nothing.
Such a short period cannot prove the seriousness on either side. Even a
minor incident on either side can be picked up to prove the violation by the
other side. A relatively longer period is necessary if we wish to really
bring peace. It is only after a period of peace and the creation of a
conducive atmosphere that talks can be held. Our Party is very serious about
bringing about peace especially at the present juncture when lakhs of
adivasis had fled, and are fleeing, their homes; when lakhs of adivasis are
facing chronic conditions of hunger and famine due to their ouster from
their lands and forcible closure of the weekly bazaars by the police and
administration; when the adivasis are haunted by the threat of death any day
by the most savage paramilitary, police, SPOs and private vigilante gangs.
One should not be swayed by victories and defeats at this critical juncture
in the life of the adivasi community in our country but try to create
conditions whereby their survival is ensured.

You are also aware of the difficulties involved for an underground party
that is proscribed by the government to proceed for talks. Hence we had
proposed the release of political prisoners from the jails. At the outset
the Government can take the initiative to release at least some of our Party
leaders so as to facilitate talks with them. Without referring to any of
these proposals made by our Party, Mr. Chidambaram proposes that “talks will
begin sometime during the period of 72 hours when there is no violence.” He
also says that he expects that the CPI(Maoist) will “continue to maintain
its position of ‘no violence’ until the talks are concluded.”

The above-mentioned proposal by Mr. Chidambaram, though it might appear
apparently as genuine, actually lacks seriousness and is intended only to
satisfy people like you who have been insisting on peace. His insistence on
a 72-hour-period of peace on the part of the CPI (Maoist) and to hold talks
during this period is like a joke. It only shows how Mr. Chidambaram lacks
seriousness on the issue and wants to somehow complete the formality of
talks, if at all they materialize, in order to satisfy the civil society. If
the government is serious it should speak in terms of mutual cease-fire, for
a longer period of time, and spell out the government’s stand on fulfilling
the minimum requisites like release of leaders and lifting the ban on the
CPI(Maoist) and the mass organisations. Its duplicity is also seen in its
hectic preparations for stepping up its brutal armed offensive even as it
speaks the language of peace and talks. Do you really believe that Mr.
Chidambaram is earnest in proposing for talks when there are reports of how
the central government is equipping its forces with several more choppers
and preparing the Indian Army too for the war on people?

To sum up, our Party desires peace sincerely in the interests of the lakhs
of adivasis who are being cruelly crushed under the jack-boots of the forces
sent by the Indian State and the people of our country at large. However, to
ensure the establishment of peace there should be cease-fire or cessation of
hostilities by both sides simultaneously instead of asking one side to
abjure violence. If the government is really serious about reducing levels
of violence then it should immediately lift the ban on the party and mass
organisations so as to facilitate them to take up open forms of struggle. If
the government is serious about holding talks it should initiate measures to
release Party leaders as a prelude to the release of political prisoners and
most importantly, it should stop all its efforts to escalate the war
including the measure of calling back all the paramilitary forces deployed
in the war zones.

Once again we appreciate the efforts made by you and many others who
earnestly desire to bring peace.

We hope that you will pursue your mission of bringing peace taking into
consideration the suggestions mentioned by us in this letter. We look
forward to positive results for your well-meaning efforts.

With regards,

Central Committee,
CPI (Maoist)


Letter from the Home Minister, P. Chidambaram, to Swami Agnivesh

*Click here to read the letter in pdf

May 11, 2010

Dear Swami Agniveshji,

I learned that you led a group of social activists on a peace march from
Raipur to Dantewada between May 6-8 2010. I have also learned that you
advocated a cessation of violence for 72 hrs “by either side before
continuing the peace process”. I congratulate you and thank you for your

While I respect your views and urge you to continue to help find a solution,
I would like to clarify the Government’s position for your kind
consideration :

(1) The CPI(Maoist) should announce that they will abjure violence. To start
with, they could say that they will not indulge in any violent activities
beginning a specific date, say, June 1 2010. (This is only an example and it
could be an earlier date too.)

(2) Once the announcement is made, the Central Government will consult the
Chief Ministers of the affected States and prepare a response well before
the specified date. The response will include an invitation to the
CPI(Maoist) to hold talks.

(3) On the specified date (say, June 1), we would expect that the
CPI(Maoist) will stop all violent activities. We would closely observe
whether the CPI(Maoist) will maintain the position of “no violence” for 72
hours. It goes without saying that, during the said period of 72 hours, the
security forces will not conduct any operations against the CPI(Maoist).

(4) It is our hope that talks will begin during the period of 72 hours when
there is “no violence”.

(5) Once the talk begins, we would expect that the CPI(Maoist) will continue
to maintain its position of “no violence” until the talks are concluded.

I would appreciate if you could kindly keep the contents of this letter
confidential. This is in line with what I told you when you met me a few
days ago. However, I would encourage you to reach out to the CPI(Maoist) and
persuade them to accept the Government’s offer for talks, the sole condition
being that the CPI(Maoist) should abjure violence.

With regards,
Yours sincerely
Sd/- P. Chidambaram
Home Minister
New Delhi, India
Read the Article in the link below


Cell No.9431102680,
Member, Secretariat, All India Forum for Right to Education (AIF-RTE)
(In complete opposition to the RTE Act 2009 & Foreign Educational
Institutions Bill 2010)
*शिक्षा नहीं कोई कारोबार, यह है जनता का अधिकार*
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"Those who have the privilege to know, have the duty to act." Albert
"The only thing necessary for Evil to Flourish is for good men to do
nothing" Edmund Burke

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