Nepali Congress maintains lead in parliamentary polls; NC candidate from Syangja constituency wins

KATHMANDU, Dec 4: Prime Minister Sher Bahadur Deuba’s Nepali Congress-led ruling coalition on Sunday maintained its lead in Nepal’s parliamentary election after its candidate from Syangja constituency No 2 Dhanraj Gurung won the election from the seat, officials said.
Gurung secured 31,466 votes against his nearest rival Padma Kumari Aryal of the CPN (UML) who bagged 25,839 votes, the Election Commission officials said.
With this the Nepali Congress (NC) tally has risen to 57 in the House of Representatives (HoR) under direct election followed by CPN-UML, which has won 44 seats so far.
CPN-Maoist Centre has bagged 17 seats while CPN-Unified Socialist has won 10 seats under direct election.
So far counting of 163 constituencies have been completed with the counting remaining for just two seats.
Counting for three constituencies, Syangja-2, Bajura and Dolakha began late as elections were postponed in these constituencies due dispute between different groups.
In the 275-member House of Representatives, 165 will be elected through direct voting, while the remaining 110 will be elected through a proportional electoral system.
A party needs at least 138 seats to form a majority government.
The five-party ruling alliance, which includes the NC, CPN-Maoist Centre, CPN-Unified Socialist, Loktantrik Samajwadi Party and Rashtriya Janamorcha has a combined strength of 85 seats in the HoR under direct election, followed by the Opposition CPN-UML alliance with 57 seats.
Nepali Congress leader Ram Chandra Poudel said on Sunday that the government to be formed now will provide political stability, good governance, development and employment in the village.
Addressing an event at Pulimarang, Byas Municipality-8 of Tanahu, he argued that the goal of the present ruling coalition is also establishing peace, good governance and a stable government.
“The country is in need of good governance. The nation will prosper if we can stop corruption and commission-mongering. We should become self-sufficient in food by revolutionizing agriculture, tourism should be expanded to the rural hinterland and industries should be opened in the villages which will create jobs, leading the country towards prosperity,” he was quoted as saying by the Rising Nepal daily.
Poudel reminded that the newly-elected people’s representatives should not betray the people.
CPN-Maoist Centre Chair Pushpa Kamal Dahal on Saturday told party leaders that there was a need to strengthen the ruling alliance as the country would face more challenge in the future, the Himalayan Times reported.
He made the remarks during a meeting of the party which was attended by Narayan Kaji Shrestha, Krishna Bahadur Mahara, Pampha Bhusal and Dev Prasad Gurung.
Mahara said the party had not decided to leave the current ruling alliance, but it was keeping its options open, including the option of alliance with the opposition CPN-UML.
Dahal and other prominent leaders had said in the run up to the elections that the current ruling alliance would protect democracy, the constitution and changes brought by the 2006 popular movement.
Meanwhile, under the proportionate voting method, CPN-UML has secured the highest number of votes, 27,73,999 followed by Nepali Congress with 26,44,241.
CPN-MC has secured 11,61,256 and RSP has secured 1119,996 votes. Similarly, RPP, JSP and Janamat Party have secured 5,85,921 votes, 4,20,931 votes and 3,94,345 votes respectively.
Elections to the House of Representatives (HoR) and seven provincial assemblies were held on November 20 to end the prolonged political instability that has plagued the Himalayan nation. (PTI)