It is becoming public that differences on policy and means of action are growing within the Maoist party. There are differences among its leaders and supporters even on the issue of dialogue with the government. It is understandable that the party leadership is trying very hard to conceal this.
Prachanda is the most important leader in the Maoist party. After him come Dr Babu Ram Bhattarai, Ram Bahadur Thapa, Mohan Vaidya and others. Even though the differences are not out in the open, there are unofficial reports that differences have in fact crept in.
The differences are mainly on the issue of dialogue with the government-a faction within the party is opposed to the talks. Ram Bahadur Thapa, alias Badal, seems more inclined to support the military thrust of the revolution, its military campaign, than dialogue. The party organisation has been trying to downplay the fact that most of the militia support Badal.
A source tells us that Badal does not want compromise on any issue the Maoists have put forward for dialogue, even less giving any of them up. The source further states that most of the party cadre disagree with the flexibility the party has shown on the issue of a republic. And Badal, who was never in favour of dialogue, is convinced that the talks won't produce a solution. Since he was in a minority in the party, he never raised this issue earlier. But now he has developed a very good rapport with the armed cadre. He has won them over and begun letting other party leaders know his views. Sources say that most party cadre now support Thapa's views, which has created problems for the top leadership.