SURKHET, March 27: Although political parties have yet to formally field their candidates for the May 14 polls, local-level leaders and the general public here are haphazardly announcing candidature for various positions of rural municipalities and municipalities through social media platforms.
They are not only announcing their contention, but also of their relatives and friends, that too without taking their prior permission.
As a number of candidates have announced their candidacy for the same post, this has given rise to online feuds and baseless accusations.
Two days ago, Dharmu Bhandari, a businessman from Birendranagar Municipality, Surkhet, posted a Facebook status announcing names of five candidates from the Nepali Congress for the position of mayor. Within 22 hours, more than 76 people commented on the status. And, most of those who commented stressed that their near and dear ones be elected.
Not only those interested in filing candidacy, but also their relatives and well wishers are equally active on social media platforms like Facebook and Twitter. People are congratulating candidates, sending their best wishes and even appealing to voters to vote for them.
Leaders and cadres of political parties are taking to social media to announce mass gatherings and various other programs, and wooing potential voters.
Yuvraj Aryal of Rambha Rural Municipality of Palpa posted a status on Facebook urging people to vote for the Congress as, according to him, the party is the only one in the country that can understand the problems of the local residents and contribute to the country's development.
Sunita Thapa, Chief of the District Election office, Surkhet, said: “There is nothing wrong in promoting candidates through social media, but people must at least take the permission with the person before publicizing their names for candidacy.”
Besides, people are also engaged in venting their anger on leaders, those from rival political parties, the government and the election, while others are using the social network platforms to misrepresent opposition.