Kathmandu, September 1
As the voting date of September 18 comes closer, major political parties in eight districts of Province 2 have expedited election campaigns.
As parties are also finalising their list of candidates, analysts have begun to estimate which party will become the first force in the region. So far, three major parties–Nepali Congress, CPN-UML, and CPN-Maoist Centre–have claimed they will emerge as the biggest force in the Province.
But, data from previous elections in these districts show that the major competition in the Province is for the second position only. Perhaps, that is why the Nepali Congress seems confident enough of winning the most seats. Therefore, local leaders in the Province have not expedited electioneering much in their constituencies in comparison with other parties.
Other major forces–mainly CPN-UML, CPN-Maoist Centre, Jastriya Janata Party Nepal and Federal Socialist Forum-Nepal–are likely to vie for the second position in the Province though they claim in the public that they will emerge as the biggest.
Nevertheless, UML and RJPN might give a daunting challenge to the Congress.
In the 2013 parliamentary elections, the Congress had received 313,966 votes under the proportional representation category. The UML had become the second force with 285762 votes. The Maoist Centre was in the third position with 211,452 votes.
However, six key Madhesh-centric parties have become united as the RJPN and the votes received by these six parties collectively are more than that of the Maoists. The six parties together had received 251,990 votes. It means the RJPN is not only the third biggest force in the Province, but a neck-and-neck competitor for the UML.
Votes received by Federal Socialist Forum-Nepal are little more than half of the votes of Maoists. But, the party is said to have become stronger after the merger with Ashok Rai-led party. Therefore, it will be such a challenge for other forces that they cannot ignore.
The Nepal Democratic Forum led by Bijaya Kumar Gachhadar, however, has been quite defensive in the region.
Published on September 1st, Friday, 2017 11:55 AM