Left to form govts in six provinces

Published On: December 11, 2017 07:06 AM NPT By: Roshan Sedhai

KATHMANDU, Dec 10: Even as the left alliance inches closer to securing majority in the federal parliament and provincial assemblies in the country, CPN-UML and CPN (Maoist Center) are trailing in third and fourth position in Province 2, the only province in the plain which saw a triangular battle between the left, right and a common alliance of the regional parties. 

Initial poll outcomes show that the alliance of Federal Socialist Forum Nepal (FSFN) and Rastriya Janata Party Nepal (RJPN) is ahead in majority of areas where vote counting is either over or underway.  The alliance has won seven seats and is leading in 12 seats for federal parliament from the region. Similarly, it has won 12 seats and is leading in 20 seats in provincial assembly. 

The result was expected as the regional parties were at the forefront of protest against the constitution.  The parties had drawn large crowd during the election due to their stance against the constitution which resounds well among the core Madhesi communities who constitute the majority of voters.  Moreover, there has long been a deep anti-establishment feeling among a section of Madhesi youths. 

The number puts them in comfortable position to form provincial government. The province remains largely unaffected by the left wave which is expected to pave way for formation of one of the most powerful governments in Nepal’s recent history. 

CPN (Maoist Center) leader Prabhu Sah and UML leader Leela Shrestha were two candidates from the left alliance to win seats for federal parliament from Province 2 as of Sunday evening. The result has been seen as a major setback for the left alliance which appears certain to form provincial government in other six provinces besides 
taking the helm at the center. 

The Nepali Congress, which emerged as the largest party in the region in local elections, has also failed to produce desired outcome. The party has just won two seats in Province 2 and is leading in four seats. NC candidates Mohammed Aftab Alam and Dev Prasad Timilsena won from Rauthat on Sunday. 

Poll outcome of Province 2 is being keenly watched as many consider it as a base for constitution amendment. 

RJPN leader Rajendra Mahato, who was elected for federal parliament from Dhanusha-3, said that the alliance would now resume struggle for constitution amendment. 
“People voted us because of our stance on the constitution. We will start fresh struggle to fulfill our election promises,” said Mahato. 

Self-governance and constitution amendment had dominated the agendas of the Madhes-based parties during the elections, while other parties were primarily making pledges of good governance, economic development, and social welfare. 
The poor show in Province 2 is likely to further weaken the left’s already weak positioning in the province. 

However, CPN (Maoist Center) spokesperson Pampha Bhusal opined that the left is still a decisive force in Province 2. 

“Even going by the current trend, the left alliance is certain to be the second largest alliance in the province. It should not be forgotten that we fought the election under adverse situation,” said Bhusal.

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