Pradip Giri was a true socialist in the age of fake ones who now dominate the country in its name.
Pradip Giri was one of those leaders that stood out in a crowd of leaders of Nepal who thought they were superior to others in political thinking and faith. Inspired by Gandhian philosophy, Giri had the image of a socialist thinker who could take up the torch for political thought and the doctrine of socialism after the legendary Bishweshwor Prasad Koirala‘s death some 40 years ago. Sadly today on the date of 21st August 2022 we lost this leader for eternity. Let us know more about this highly noted socialist thinker:
Table of Contents
Pradip Giri was born in Bastipur, Siraha. He came from a political family. His father was Netra Lal Giri who was a Nepali Congress leader and contributed to the revolution of 2007 B.S. against the Rana Regime. Giri’s uncle Tulsi Giri was a Nepali Congress leader who betrayed B.P. Koirala and later joined forces with the partyless Panchayat system and became Prime Minister of Nepal twice.
Joining Nepali Congress:
Inspired by his father’s struggle for bringing democracy to Nepal, Giri joined the Nepali Congress in 1961. Those were the dark times for party politics since King Mahendra had instigated a coup and imprisoned many political leaders including Prime Minister B.P. Koirala and his entire cabinet and started the autocratic Panchayat system. Giri graduated with a Master’s Degree in Philosophy and Economics from Jawaharlal Nehru University, India.
Struggle for Democracy:
Since Panchayat system was an autocratic system where all the powers of rule were snatched from the hands of the people and its elective representatives to the hand of the Palace and Monarchs. Utilizing a few betrayers from Nepali Congress like Tulsi Giri and Bishwabandhu Thapa who were close to Prime Minister B.P. Koirala, King Mahendra instigated a coup using his praetorian guard for cover.
Despite all these setbacks Nepali Congress led by mighty Subarna Shumsher from Calcutta started a violent and non-violent struggle against this autocracy and restoration of democracy. It was because of the energetic cadres like Pradip Giri that the struggle continued to gain momentum for 30 years in the oppressive Panchayat regime eventually overthrowing it in 2046 B.S.
Despite the danger of going to jail and even being put to death like many other congress cadres Giri kept up the struggle for democracy and was even punished by the government for it. Giri spent four years in jail during the Panchayati regime. He was a popular leader among leaders and cadres.
It was the intellectual field where Pradip Giri got famous for not the party politics or the work in the government. Giri was known as a socialist thinker and intellectual leader in the country and abroad along with Congress politics. Giri has also authored over two dozen books. A Gandhian politician by influence and a prominent supporter of the socialist philosophy put forward by congress leader B.P. Koirala, he was among a few leaders in Nepal who was touted as the person who could interpret Marxism.
The Congress leader was well-versed in Marxism and earned respect from across the political spectrum for his politics of conviction, simplicity, and great oratory skills. Giri often put some communists, who claim to follow a Marxist ideology, to shame. Giri’s good grasp of Marxism was widely regarded as an intellectual who could explain Marxism to ordinary minds.
Image of Pradip Giri:
Pradip Giri was a follower of Mahatama Gandhi who was highly influenced by the socialist movement in India led by Jayprakash Narayan and Ram Manohar Lohiya. Giri was known as a fearless leader, not afraid of criticizing his own party and the leadership and never hesitating to offer to oppose them with his unpopular views. Giri’s knowledge of political theories, in particular, socialism, and other social concerns was so famous that even communist parties would invite him to train their cadres on Marxism, socialism, and democracy.
He never held any position of benefit and was also known for his simplicity, candor, and wide-ranging erudition. Giri was one leader who always played the opposition role in Congress, questioning the leadership and keeping them on their toes. Giri’s main flaw was that he understood the problems in Nepali politics and would not hesitate to explain them, but he did little to address those issues. However, with the shortage of such intellectual minds in Nepalese politics, he will be severely missed by contemporary and upcoming leaders.
Conclusion: Death of a Thinker and a Rebel
The veteran leader of the Nepali Congress who was active for almost 60 years in party politics breathed his last breath at Nepal Mediciti Hospital in Lalitpur at around 9:30 pm on Saturday. He was suffering from cancer, and pneumonia coupled with it had led to multi-organ failure at the last stage.
Nepali Congress President and Prime Minister Sher Bahadur Deuba said on Twitter that he was shocked by Giri’s demise and he tweeted that “I am shocked by the news of the death of my friend Pradeep Giriji, the leader of Nepali Congress and an ideological and socialist thinker of Nepali politics,”.With his death, Nepal has lost a true and good leader. Wishing his soul eternal peace, I express my deepest condolences to the family.”
Heartfelt condolences and Goodbye Mr. Giri!!!