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Dancing Maoists and Strikes

By Friday, March 29, 2013 , ,

From what I understand, between 1996 and 2006 the Maoists waged the Nepalese Civil war against the Nepalese government forces In 2006, they officially joined the government as the Unified Communist Party of Nepal, but on 19 June 2012, the more extreme in the party split into the (un-unified?) Communist Party of Nepal. So now there are two Maoist/communist parties, one working in the governmental  and one outside of it. The CPN occasionally (or quite regularly) holds strikes where all traffic aside from emergency and other vital vehicles are banned.  They'll break the windows and pop the tires of any unpermitted vehicle driving on these days as well as blocking roads with dancing road block. You can't really tell from a still photo, but there is a ring of people marching and clapping in time to the music with someone dancing in the center. The dancer and marchers would switch off,  and I half expected the one in the middle to start break dancing.

Meanwhile, the Nepalese Military participated in the martial equivalent of flexing in the mirror:

Walking home the streets were empty aside from emergency vehicles and a few taking visitor to and from the airport. This is the road outside of the Parliament Building:

Later that day we saw the rally and some graffiti:

If you're a tourist there are specially marked buses and vans to take you to and from the airport. There were police in riot gear around, but they were generally sitting on fencing and lounging around. It was pretty clear they didn't expect any trouble. We were able to walk between our hotel and work so that didn't effect us too much. What did was we had to pick up our equipment from the airport and weren't able to, we lost two days I think to the strikes when we could have been working.

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