We feel that some of the demands of Nepalis can be easily met by Nepali goods so it is not necessary to import these.
But your shirt is not made in Nepal. Why aren't you wearing clothes produced domestically?
Because there aren't enough clothes produced in Nepal and when there is a shortage of supply we must bring goods from outside. For example, the local market cannot meet the demand for medicines, so we must import them.
How come these demands are resurfacing only after your party split with the establishment? Why were you silent all these years?
We had tried time and again to raise these issues, but the party wouldn't listen to us. Some of our leaders have forgotten communist ideology and sold out. So after we split, these things came naturally to us because they are related to national sovereignty.
What happened to national sovereignty when you spent eight out of ten years of the armed conflict in India?
Yes, we can't deny that we used Indian territory during the conflict, but out of the four million Nepalis in India, half of them supported us.
What will happen to those four million Nepalis if the Indian government decides to return the favour and ban Nepalis or Nepali vehicles from entering their terrain?
First of all the move has to be justified.
Do you think Nepal's sovereignty and nationality will be saved by taking India on?
We are only claiming our rights and not looking for a fight. They must not think of it as their loss. India is a friend, as is China and we must look to build our economy with the support of these countries. But even then, Nepal has certain interests and those must not be misinterpreted as an affront.
How long will this 'nationalism' campaign go on?
Let's see. We will make sure that our actions don't negatively affect the lives of ordinary Nepalis. There have been false reports that we stopped the supply of LPG and medicines. But these claims are baseless.
But hall owners and distributors are suffering huge losses due to the ban and many Nepalis don't support the move either. What do you have to say?
You are right, but many people have invested a lot in Nepali films and the industry must be nurtured and developed. But as is the case with vehicles, there are some capitalists here who are acting as agents of India capitalists and we are against them.
But why blame Indian vehicles for the current political crisis. Aren't we in this situation because political stalwarts like you failed to steer the country to prosperity?
There is no doubt that politicians ruined the country, because politics decides all. Also in addition to the ban on Indian cars and films, we have 28 other demands related to national sovereignty that we will look to enforce. After having fought the people's war, I think we have the right to address these demands. Baburam Bhattarai said his government will take strong actions against us for the vehicle clamp down, but he has done nothing so far and won't be able to do anything because we are functioning within our rights.
After 50 years in politics, don't you think all your efforts have gone to waste?
No, I don't agree because in politics you have to take a stand. Maybe we made some mistakes, and have not achieved all that we set out to do, but I'm sure we've done some things right.