KATHMANDU, March 20: Prime Minister Pushpa Kamal Dahal is taking the vote of confidence from the House of Representatives meeting on Monday.
According to the Federal Parliament Secretariat, the meeting of the House of Representatives (HoR) has been called for 1 pm on Monday to conduct a vote of confidence.
Prime Minister Dahal is under the constitutional obligation to receive a vote of confidence after the CPN-UML and Rastriya Prajatantra Party (RPP) withdrew their support to the government. Prime Minister Dahal needs 138 votes to get the confidence of the 275-member parliament.
Earlier, Dahal had secured the votes of 268 of the total 275 lawmakers in the HoR. At that time, Nepali Congress and CPN (Unified Socialists) had also cast their votes in favor of Dahal, although the two parties stayed in the opposition.
Now, the alliance equation has changed. The major parties in the parliament, including the UML and RPP have joined the opposition, while the NC has become part of the ruling alliance. It seems certain that Prime Minister Dahal will get the required votes.
A meeting of the ruling alliance held in Baluwatar on Saturday had decided to give the vote of confidence to Prime Minister Dahal. The ruling alliance consists of NC, CPN (Maoist Centre), CPN (Unified Socialist), Janata Samajwadi Party (JSP), Loktantrik Samajbadi Party, Nagarik Unmukti Party, Janmat Party and People's Front Nepal, among others. Rastriya Swatantra Party led by Rabi Lamichhane has also decided to cast its votes in favor of Prime Minister Dahal.
How many lawmakers are likely to support PM Dahal ?
Nepali Congress (NC), which has backed PM Dahal has 89 lawmakers in the HoR. However, it seems that only 86 lawmakers will vote for Prime Minister Dahal.
Among the elected MPs from Manang, Tek Bahadur Gurung is under suspension, while Ram Chandra Poudel, the MP elected from Tanahun-1, has been elected as the president. Similarly, NC lawmaker Chandra Bhandari is in India for treatment.
The ruling Maoist Center has a total 32 Maoist MPs in the HoR. But as Maoist lawmaker Barshaman is currently in China for treatment, Prime Minister Dahal will receive only 31 votes from his own party.
The CPN (Unified Socialist), which has decided to give a vote of confidence to the Prime Minister Dahal, has 10 MPs in the HoR.
Similarly, Janata Samajbadi Party (JSP), which has decided to support Prime Minister Dahal, has 12 MPs in the House of Representatives. Among them, MP Ram Sahay Prasad Yadav elected from Bara-2 has been elected as the vice president and a proportional MP Sahnaz Rahman passed away recently. Prime Minister Dahal will likely receive 10 votes from the JSP.
Rastriya Swatantra Party (RSP), which has been supporting the government, has also decided to give a vote of confidence to Prime Minister Dahal. Of the total 20 MPs of RSP, Ravi Lamichhane, who is also the president of RSP was dismissed in the citizenship case. Only 19 RSP lawmakers are likely to cast their votes in favor of Dahal.
Similarly, Loktantrik Samajbadi Party, which has announced to support Prime Minister Dahal, has four members in the HoR.
Nagarik Unmukti Party, which also announced to support Prime Minister Dahal, has four MPs in the HoR.
The CK Raut-led Janmat Party, which has six lawmakers in the HoR, will cast the vote in favor of Prime Minister Dahal.
Likewise, People's Front Nepal led by Chitra Bahadur KC has expressed its support to Prime Minister Dahal. The party has one lawmaker in the HoR.
Similarly, Independent lawmakers Prabhu Shah and Amaresh Singh have also announced their support to Prime Minister Dahal. This shows that Prime Minister Dahal is likely to get the support of 173 lawmakers during the vote of confidence.
Who are likely to vote against PM Dahal?
It is said that UML, RPP and NWPP will likely vote against Prime Minister Dahal. The UML, which was forced to leave the government after the Maoist Centre did not back its presidential candidate as promised, is preparing to stand in the opposition.
The UML has 79 MPs in the HoR. Of them, Devraj Ghimire elected from Jhapa-2 has become the speaker. The speaker can vote only if there are equal votes for and against in the parliament. However, such a situation appears less likely in Monday's voting.
Similarly, Lakshmi Mahato Koiri, who was elected from Mahottari Constituency 1, is absconding on charges of murder. It seems that 77 votes from UML will fall to the opposition.
RPP, which earlier withdrew from the government after Prime Minister Dahal changed the alliance, is preparing to stand in opposition to Prime Minister Dahal. The party has a total of 14 lawmakers in the HoR.
Similarly, Nepal Workers' and Peasant Party (NWPP) is likely to vote against Prime Minister Dahal. The party has one member in the HoR. This shows that 92 lawmakers are likely to stand against Dahal in the parliament.