Voice grows in party to change electoral symbolAs infighting spirals in the Rastriya Prajatantra Party (RPP) with top leadership engaged in power tussle, the party’s electoral symbol once against burst onto the scene during a Central Working Committee (CWC) meeting on Wednesday.
As infighting spirals in the Rastriya Prajatantra Party (RPP) with top leadership engaged in power tussle, the party’s electoral symbol once against burst onto the scene during a Central Working Committee (CWC) meeting on Wednesday.
Various CWC members were of the view that many voters were confused and hence cast their votes on “pair of oxen” instead of “cow”, the electoral symbol of the RPP, which became a unified force about six months ago after the merger of two right wing forces—the RPP and RPP-Nepal.
“Pair of oxen” is the electoral symbol of the Tarai Madhes Loktantrik Party (TMLP).
The dispute over the electoral symbol had arisen in the RPP earlier as well.
CWC members on Wednesday went to say that the “cow” electoral symbol was one of the reasons for the party’s poor showing during the local elections.
They claimed that significant numbers of voters cast their votes on “pair of oxen” as they mistook it for “cow” on the ballot paper.
A majority of the 20 CWC members who aired their views on Wednesday called for taking “plough” as the party’s electoral symbol.
The RPP’s electoral symbol before the merger was a plough.
According to party Vice Chairman Buddhi Man Tamang, Shyam Shahi, Jagat Gauchan and Bindu Pahadi, among others asked the party leadership to change the electoral symbol. Those seeking to change the electoral symbol cited an incident in of the rural municipalities in Rupandehi where RPP’s candidate for the post of vice chairman was defeated by a margin of 300 votes. Interestingly, over 500 votes were cast on “pair of oxen”, which belongs to the TMLP which had not fielded any candidate there.
The CWC members claimed that voters could have cast their votes on “a pair of oxen” symbol confusing it with “cow” symbol.
With the voice within the party growing for changing the electoral symbol, RPP Chairman Kamal Thapa is learnt to have been positive about adopting “plough” as the symbol.
During Wednesday’s meeting, Chairman Thapa presented a political paper, General Secretary Dhurba Bahadur Pradhan presented election analysis, General Secretary Jayant Chand presented party secretariat and future strategy and Treasurer Uddhav Poudel present his financial report.
The leaders addressing the meeting, however, had divided opinions on joining the government. While some argued that the party should not vote in favour of constitution amendment, others said the party should support it “if it helps defuse the current political crisis”.
The meeting, which has been boycotted by senior leader Pashupati Shumsher Rana, will take a decision on party’s position over statute amendment, joining government and future strategy for the other elections.
The three-day meeting will continue till Thursday.
Thapa calls Rana
KATHMANDU: In a bid to defuse the crisis in the party, Rastriya Prajatantra Party (RPP) Chairman Kamal Thapa on Wednesday spoke with senior leader Pashupati Shumsher Rana over phone and assured him that he would appoint 11 leaders close to Rana in the Central Working Committee.
Rana has boycotted the party’s CWC meeting, accusing Thapa of running the party in a unilateral way and appointing 42 members in the CWC without consultation.
According party sources, Thapa also assured the dissident faction that he would put the faction on priority when the party joins the government. Rana, according to the sources, has been demanding that at least a dozen leaders from his faction be included in the CWC.