Rastriya Swatantra Party adopts ‘pluralistic democracy’ as its guiding principleAnalysts say the party’s political philosophy is vague and it fails to provide clear answers on its position on federalism.
The Rastriya Swatantra Party has decided to adopt pluralistic democracy as the party's guiding principle.
A joint meeting of the party's central committee and parliamentary party held in Jaleshwar in Mahottari district from Monday endorsed the preamble of the political paper that gives the party a political ideology. Rastriya Swatantra Party believes in a pluralistic democracy and is committed to equitable progress of all Nepalis through liberal economy with social justice, reads the preamble.
The party, formed in July last year just before the parliamentary elections, has also decided to work towards an equitable and inclusive society under the democratic republican governance system that ensures individual freedom and fundamental rights. It took around a year and a half for the party to agree on its guiding principle.
The fourth largest party in the House of Representatives also has adopted the policy of establishing a welfare state by mobilising the resources from public, private and community levels.
"We have endorsed the party's guiding philosophy. The political paper will be written based on this philosophy," Santosh Pariyar, the party's chief whip and secretariat member, told the Post.
The three-day meeting also nominated office bearers and expanded its central committee. The party on Wednesday decided to nominate Swarnim Wagle, a lawmaker, as a vice-president of the party. Economist Wagle quit Nepali Congress to join the RSP in March this year after he was assured a ticket in the bypolls.
He won the bypolls from Tanahun-1 held in April beating the Congress candidate by a huge margin. Wagle and 14 other lawmakers were named central committee members on Tuesday. A day later, he got the third rank in the party hierarchy after Rabi Lamichhane, the party president, and Dol Prasad Aryal, another vice president. Mukul Dahal continues to be the party's general secretary.
On Wednesday, the party also nominated lawmaker Sumana Shrestha and Bipin Acharya as its deputy general secretaries while Lima Adhikari became the treasurer. It has picked Manish Jha, Pratibha Rawal and Ramesh Prasain as assistant spokespersons.
Other than the lawmakers, Anil Keshari Shah, Rajan Gautam, Nandan Yadav, Pukar Bam and Kamini Chaudhari have also become central committee members, increasing the strength to 67, according to Pariyar. The joint meeting has also decided to constitute a 22-member secretariat. In addition to the office bearers, Pariyar and Biraj Bhakta Shrestha, deputy parliamentary party leader, are secretariat members now.
The RSP managed to win 20 seats, establishing itself as a dominant political force in the country. It added one more seat in the April bypoll.
Political analysts see Wagle’s promotion to vice-president as a huge step the party has taken to demonstrate that deserving people have room for growth in the party. Wagle got the second highest position within a few months after joining the party.
"The RSP has given a message that those who have potential can rise in the party, unlike in traditional parties. Leaving aside founding leaders, the party promoted Wagle," Sanjeev Humagain, who teaches political science in Tribhuvan University, told the Post. "This will also give a message that the party is now consolidated."
Humagain, however, was critical of nominating all lawmakers to the central committee. The party has failed to see that running party and parliamentary functions are two different things, he said.
"I also found the party's political philosophy vague,” Humagain added. “It has failed to give clear answers to what the party's position on federalism is, its vision to promote the economy and its roadmap for good governance."