September 25, 2017 07:04 AM NPT
KATHMANDU, Sept 25: Despite winning most seats in Province 2 local polls, Nepali Congress (NC) is not satisfied with the election result stating that the result was less than the party’s expectations.
NC considers Province 2 as its traditional vote bank but has so far won 37 seats and is leading in 3 local units. But political analysts and the party leaders say NC is the biggest loser in Province 2 polls despite the big lead.
NC leader Ananda Dhungana admitted that the party is not satisfied with NC’s performance in Madhes. “NC emerged mainly from the tarai region and it is also our stronghold. Despite winning most local units, the result is much less than our expectations. We had expected to win at least 75-80 local units,” said Dhungana. He further said that NC should correct its weaknesses and mistakes in the days to come.
Meanwhile, the combined results of Madhes-based parties have outpaced NC in a multi-sided battle among the national and regional parties.
Of the total 136 local units that went to polls on September 18, Madhes-based parties have registered victory in 53 seats, with vote counting in seven local units still underway.
As of Sunday evening, the Federal Socialist Forum Nepal (FSFN) and Rastriya Janata Party Nepal (RJPN) have won 24 seats each. FSFN led by Upendra Yadav is leading in 4 other local units. Similarly, Nepal Loktantrik Forum and Nepali Janata Dal have won 3 and 2 local units respectively.
Political analyst Chandra Kishore said that the agenda of Madhes has won in Province 2 local polls with the combined strength of two Madhes-based political parties - FSFN and RJPN -winning more seats than the NC.
“Despite winning in most local units, NC has lost in Madhes in this election because it was NC’s stronghold. NC has lost in Madhes mainly because it took time to own the agenda of Madhes. Other reasons include dispute within the party and monopoly in candidacy finalization as well as leaders’ mismanagement,” he said.
Not many were surprised with CPN-UML’s poor showing in the Province 2 local polls due to the party’s rigid position during the Madhes agitation. As of Sunday evening, UML has own in 17 local units which is less than Maoist center’s 21.
“UML’s poor showing was expected but the party has increased its vote bank by fielding non-political individuals as candidates in the local polls,” said Chandra Kishore.
The Province 2 poll results are reminiscent of the 2008 CA elections when the regional parties had produced remarkable results. Madhesi leaders said that the elections result, though short of their expectations, has spared their blushes. Madhes-based parties were under pressure to do better as they consider themselves as torchbearers of the Madhesi agenda.
Madhesi leaders said that the civic polls results will help them perform better in the provincial elections. They said that the local elections made it easier to expand their organization at the local level.
“We won despite the fact that the national parties have better organization on the ground. It happened because of our agenda. The election made it easier for us to expand our organization in every village. This will help us do better in the next polls,” said RJPN Vice Chairman Brishesh Chandra Lal.
The country is scheduled to go for provincial and parliamentary polls on November 26 and December 7. FSFN Chairman Upendra Yadav said that the regional parties have every reason to do better in the next election.