Kathmandu, October 28
Federal Socialist Forum-Nepal and Rastriya Janata Party-Nepal today demanded that the Nepali Congress and constituents of the democratic alliance leave 24 first-past-the-post parliamentary constituencies for them in Province 2 alone.
The FSF-N and RJP-N put forth this demand in talks with NC leaders today. Congress leaders did not agree. They will hold dialogue tomorrow.
FSF-N leader Ram Sahay Yadav said the FSF-N and RJP-N demanded that the NC allocate 55 constituencies for them across the nation. He said the FSF-N and the RJP-N also demanded 48 provincial FPTP seats in Province 2 alone.
These parties have formed a task force along with the RPP and RPP-D to expedite formation of a democratic alliance.
The FSF-N and RJP-N said they would divide the constituencies between them after the Nepali Congress, which is spearheading the process of forming a democratic alliance, allocates FPTP constituencies to them.
Another FSF-N leader Rakam Chemjong informed that the NC said they were demanding too many seats in Province 2 and the NC could not agree. “We wanted to forge alliance in all the FPTP constituencies of Province 2, but now it appears we might not be able to do that,” he said, adding that now there could be electoral alliance in a few constituencies where top leaders would be in the fray.
Balkrishna Khand, who represents the NC in the task force, said the party was mulling the modalities for alliance. “We are still debating whether to support the candidacy of top leaders of the democratic alliance or field common candidates in constituencies where candidates of the left alliance are strong contenders,” Khand added.
He said the NC might not go for the kind of seat-sharing model that the left alliance has followed for provincial and parliamentary polls. The left alliance of the CPN-UML and CPN-MC are sharing seats on 60:40 basis with UML getting 60 per cent of FPTP constituencies.
“Their seat-sharing formula will reduce their vote share in the election and we don’t want to follow such a model,” he added. “If we leave too many constituencies to our alliance partners then there will be less mobilisation of party leaders and cadres and that will cost us our proportional representation votes,” he added.
Khand said the NC had already decided to support Rastriya Prajatantra Party-Democratic leader Pashupati Shamsher JB Rana in Sindhupalchowk, Naya Shakti Party-Nepal leader Baburam Bhattarai in Gorkha, the FSF-N candidate in Bhojpur and Rastriya Prajatantra Party candidate in Myagdi district in the first phase of provincial and parliamentary polls scheduled for November 26.
A version of this article appears in print on October 29, 2017 of The Himalayan Times.