Kamal Thapa trips over dollars while picking up pennies
Rastriya Prajatantra Party-Nepal won a whopping 25 seats in the second Constituent Assembly (CA) election after the party of former monarchists had been limited to just four seats in the first.
RPP-N became the fourth largest party in the parliament winning seven percent of votes across the country in proportional representation (PR) system by raising the issue of Hindu state despite not winning a single seat in first-past-the-post (FPTP) system. This was a big comeback for Kamal Thapa who had been the captain of the sinking ship of Gyanendra regime and struggled with accusations of 'rat practice' for his past history of abandoning a sinking coalition/party to join a new one.
Thapa's RPP-N, that supported constitutional monarchy and Hindu state, was the main opposition party in essence in the CA that was firmly in favor of a republic and secular state.
The other party of former monarchists, RPP, on the other had won 12 seats including three in FPTP and nine in PR system. Kamal Thapa had the Hindu agenda with him while RPP was without any agenda. The two parties opted for unification after RPP adopted the agenda of Hindu state.
The two parties had unified on November 20, 2016 expecting to do better in the upcoming general election, and the general convention of unity that started on February 17 had elected a new leadership. Some had even expected the unified RPP to pip CPN (Maoist Center) in the upcoming general election to become the third largest party.
Thapa was the biggest winner from the unification as he became chairman of the party that had former monarchists much senior to him. His prestige and role in national politics had also increased as chairman of a bigger party. Thapa, who was foreign minister and deputy prime minister in the KP Oli government, again became DPM and local development minister in the Pushpa Kamal Dahal government.
With CPN-UML vehemently opposing constitution amendment, RPP held the keys to amendment. The latest split in the party in this manner has hit him the hardest. So much so that Thapa has lost at least 10 lawmakers he had nominated for PR system from RPP-N to the Pashupati Shumsher Rana faction after the split.
Names of Ram Kumar Subba, Babina Lawati, Biraj Bista, Resham Lama, Sita Luitel, Kamal Sharma, Leela Shrestha, Sanyandra Bantawa, Bhanu Mahara and Rajeshwari Singh--who were elected as lawmakers from RPP-N through PR system--have been included in the list of lawmakers that the Rana faction has submitted to the Election Commission for registration RPP-Prajatantrik. The Rana faction claims that two more lawmakers from erstwhile RPP-N will defect.
Losing just the 10 lawmakers included in the list submitted to the Election Commission would be a big blow for Thapa. Thapa, who led the fourth largest party in the parliament with 25 lawmakers even before unification, will now become chairman of the fourth largest one.
Rastriya Janata Party Nepal, formed recently after unification of six Madhes-based parties, currently has 24 seats. Similarly, Democratic Forum Nepal led by Bijay Kumar Gachchhadar has 17 and Federal Socialist Forum 15.
RPP-Prajatantrik, that the Rana faction has formed, claims it has 22 lawmakers. That means Thapa will have just 15 lawmakers in RPP.
Thapa had gone for unification with hope of becoming a leader of a bigger party and to do better in the upcoming general election. But the split has left him much weaker and smaller than he was before unification.
It would have been virtually impossible for anyone to engineer a split in his party with support of 40 percent in both the central committee and parliamentary party, as required by the new anti-defection law, if RPP-N were a separate party now.
His status as the chairman of RPP-N was unchallengeable. He will now face a mountain of challenges to build RPP to the size of erstwhile RPP-N after this split.
CPN (Maoist Center) selects its candidates for twin elections
According to CPN (Maoist Center) Spokesperson Pampha Bhusal, the name list of the candidates contesting the upcoming twin elections was made public after the CPN (Maoist Center) and CPN-UML recently forged a political alliance in view of the elections.
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Amendment of Education Act: A betrayal to capable candidates
Not all, but many of the temporary teachers who have been wishing to become permanent, no doubt, appointed on the basis of their political ideologies. They couldn't succeed in the examinations despite repeated attempts. They carried the bags of those parties during their teaching career.
The Doklam dilemma
Being a buffer state between the two giant neighbors, Nepal should conduct its foreign policy vis-à-vis China and India in a very sensitive manner. Nepal has always maintained that it would not allow its soil to be used against any neighbor. At the same time, Nepal should make sure that its own national interests are never compromised.
Gaurab Shumsher Thapa
To dogs, with love
Many find talking about basic animal rights stupid when no basic rights of people are guaranteed. However, there are still few people who are aware how humane behavior has turned toward cruelty and indifference which can be vividly seen through the way street dogs and other animals are abused around us.
Unanswered questions on recent leftist alliance
Although they seem to be very much communist while in opposition, whether about the 'Indian semi-colonial status' in Nepal or American hegemony, this has never been evident while they actually come into power and rule Nepal.
Dr Chandra Sharma Poudyal
What we need to learn from Thailand?
Thailand is a developing country. But it seemed like a developed country at first sight. It is hard to believe that Thailand is a developing country. There are big buildings, and clean and broad roads. The city is clean with no trace of pollution.
Traffic Police in Kathmandu
As busy and hassling as the traffic system in Kathmandu is, the Traffic Police here have to handle an equally strenuous job. Over 1,400 traffic officers in and around the Kathmandu Valley battle against the pestering traffic and air pollution each day.