RPP formally splits
Kathmandu, August 6
The Rastriya Prajatantra Party split today, as Pashupati Shumsher JB Rana registered a new party -- Rastriya Prajatantra Party-Democratic -- at the Election Commission.
Rana submitted signatures of 72 central working committee members at the EC to register RPP-D under his leadership.
The CWC members, who defected from RPP to support Rana, include Deepak Bohara, Sunil Thapa, Bikram Pandey, Ram Kumar Subba, Nabaraj Subedi, Hari Bahadur Basnet, Dhurba Bahadur Pradhan, Ram Chandra Raya and others, according to Siddhartha Thapa, a leader of the new party.
“RPP Chair Kamal Thapa compromised on the party’s main ideology — Hinduism and monarchy, which was political dishonesty. Due to his opportunist behaviour the party suffered serious setback in the local level polls,” said Siddhartha Thapa. He said out of six deputy chairpersons of the RPP, three had supported Rana; two general secretaries and the deputy parliamentary party leader supported Rana.
Siddhartha and another Rana loyalist, Thakur Prasad Sharma, alleged that Kamal Thapa played a crucial role in drafting the constituent amendment bill when he was in the government but later blasted the same bill calling it anti-national. They also accused Kamal Thapa of promoting nepotism and favouritism in the party.
Out of 153 CWC members of the party, support of 63 members was needed to split the party.
Rana took the step of splitting the party after a meeting with Kamal Thapa and senior leader Lokendra Bahadur Chand at the latter’s house in Bhaktapur.
RPP Spokesperson Bhuvan Pathak alleged that the incumbent government was responsible for splitting the RPP. According to Pathak, the party’s office bearers had decided that the party would not join the Prime Minister Sher Bahadur Deuba-led government. He alleged that most of the signatures submitted by Rana at the EC were fabricated.
The gulf between the factions led by Thapa and Rana had widened after Thapa nominated 42 members to the CWC without consulting Rana.
Kamal Thapa loyalist Mohan Shrestha alleged that Rana split the party after the PM offered him four ministries, including deputy prime ministerial portfolio, in his Cabinet.
EC Spokesperson Surya Prasad Sharma said the EC would scrutinise the CWC members’ signatures and the party’s documents before giving it validity.