Interesting poll battle on the cards in Pyuthan

Dang, November 10

Pyuthan, a district in Province 6, is being closely watched ahead of the expected electoral competition between Govind Pokhrel, former CEO of National Reconstruction Authority, and Durga Poudel, who is the wife of veteran communist leader Mohan Bikram Singh.

While Pokhrel has taken to the election battleground from Nepali Congress by stepping down as the head of the reconstruction body, Poudel is a leftist alliance candidate in the district that has only one seat for the parliament.

To reflect on the history of the district, Pyuthan has remained as a leftist bastion that has given birth to a number of famed leftist leaders, such as Mohan Baidya, Bamdev Gautam, Lilamani Pokhrel, besides Mohan Bikram Singh. The district that has 80 per cent leftist voters is the place where Mohan Bikram founded communist party more than 60 years ago.

He had lost by a narrow margin in the general election of 1959. As for the 1991 general election, Nepali Congress had won from both constituencies given the boycott of CPN (Masal). Though Masal and NC had won one seat each in the 1994 election, Rastriya Janamorcha had won from both constituencies by forging an alliance with UML in 1999 elections. Both the constituencies had gone to the then Maoist party and then UML in the first and CA elections respectively.

If the latest poll results are anything to go by, leftist alliance is far ahead of NC in the district. While the leftist alliance’s votes totals somewhere at 64,305, NC is at 23,283 votes. Of the total nine local units, NC had won one rural municipality and two rural municipalities solely, while UML had won one municipality and two rural municipalities.