Kathmandu, May 20
This turned out to be a bad day for Ram Bahadur Thapa, a former Maoist leader who has recently joined the ruling CPN-UML.
Hours after he lost the position of the Minister for Home Affairs due to a Supreme Court order, Thapa lost his effort to secure a National Assembly seat.
In the election held on Thursday, he lost the battle to the opposition alliance’s Khim Lal Devkota, according to the results announced in the late afternoon.
Devkota secured 5,088 votes against 4,014 of Thapa.
The UML apparently had a majority in the electorate comprising of Provincial Assembly members and chiefs and deputies of the local governments of the Bagmati province. However, he could not win the poll as the voters of the Madhav Kumar Nepal-led faction of the party voted against him.
Until a week ago, the disgruntled faction was preparing to split the party. Hence, it had already made a deal with the opposition parties to form an alliance for the by-election in the province. Although the camp has withdrawn the split plan, it decided to not vote Thapa as Devkota was loyal to the faction.
Following the results, the UML has once again come onto the verge of splitting. The party leadership of Prime Minister KP Sharma Oli has already said the act of not voting for the party’s official candidate could not be tolerated.