83 file papers for 56 Upper House seats

Kathmandu, January 24

Eighty-three candidates from nine parties filed their nomination papers today to contest the National Assembly election for 56 seats on February 7.

The Election Commission stated that all national parties — Nepali Congress, CPN-UML, CPN-Maoist Centre, Rastriya Janata Party-Nepal and Federal Socialist Forum-Nepal — have fielded candidates for the NA election.

Other parties that have fielded candidates for the Upper House election are: Nepal Workers and Peasants Party, Rastriya Janamorcha, Rastriya Prajatantra Party and Nepal Sanghiya Samajbadi Party.

Contestants include 26 women, who have filed their papers for 21 reserved posts in seven provinces.

All the 12 women contestants from provinces 1, 2, 5 and 7 — three from each province — will be declared elected unopposed on January 29, as each province elects only three women. In Province 7, candidates who have filed their nominations under the open category will also be elected unopposed as only three candidates — one each from CPN-UML, CPN-MC and NC — have filed nominations, according to the EC.

Only one Dalit from the FSF-N filed nomination from Province 2 and will also be elected unopposed.

RJP-N’s Brijhesh Chandra Lal, who has filed his candidacy under minority community from Province 2, will also be elected unopposed.

Eight NA members — three women, three from the open category, one from Dalit community and one  from minority community or differently-abled candidate — will be elected from each province. Three members will be chosen by the president on the government’s recommendation.

Election will be held for 39 seats, as 17 candidates will be elected unopposed.

EC Spokesperson Navaraj Dhakal said the poll panel would announce unopposed winners on January 29, the day the EC would publish names of final contestants after investigating complaints against the candidates.

The EC will publish final names of candidates at 4:00pm on January 29 and will provide election symbols on the same date.

The EC said 28 candidates had filed nominations for 21 NA seats in the open category, 14 for seven Dalit seats and 15 for seven seats for differently-abled or marginalised groups.

The EC stated that six NA members — three women and three from the open category — would be elected under single transferable voting system from each province and two members — one Dalit and one differently-abled person or belonging to a minority group — would be elected from each province under the first-past-the-post system. If two candidates get equal number of votes, winner will be selected through toss of coin by an EC staffer.

Dhakal said the process of filing nomination papers was completed peacefully in the seven provinces. He said candidates turned up in offices of returning officers with their supporters.

The EC has set up offices of returning officers in Morang, Dhanusha, Lalitpur, Kaski, Dang, Surkhet and Doti districts, where NA election will be held.