Nepal re-elects women President for second time

KATHMANDU: Incumbent President Bidya Devi Bhandari has emerged victorious with an overwhelming majority and been re-elected to new term of office, as per the voting result made public following Tuesday’s (March 13, 2018) presidential election.

According to Hamalayan Times main opposition party Nepali Congress had fielded former lawmaker Kumari Laxmi Rai against incumbent President Bhandari in the run for the top post. Bhandari had been endorsed by the left-alliance. Federal Socialist Forum Nepal, Rastriya Janata Party Nepal, and other fringe parties had also backed Bhandari.

According to media reports President had the backing of the Communist alliance government which dominated recent parliamentary and provincial assembly elections.

Bhandari has a long political career. Before becoming president she was a powerful leader of the Communist Party of Nepal Unified Marxist-Leninist.

President Bhandari received 39,275 votes, while NC lawmaker Rai received 11,730 votes. President Bhandari has won the election by 27,545 votes. Vote-weightage of each voter of the House of Representatives and National Assembly was 79, while that of each Provincial Assembly member was equivalent to 48.

An electoral college comprising Members of Federal Parliament and Province Assemblies had cast their votes to elect the President. As many as 862 votes were cast in the presidential election today at the Federal Parliament Building in New Baneshwor, Kathmandu.

Hamalayan Times report added that out of the 334 federal parliament members, 326 members cast their votes in the election. Likewise, 549 provincial assembly members were eligible to exercise their franchise in the presidential election, of which 13 were absent during the vote casting. As per the Constitution of Nepal, the term of the President shall be of five years and maximum of two terms.

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