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Nepal’s fourth largest party splits

Once the process of registration of the new party is completed, it is likely to join the Sher Bahadur Deuba-led government.

world Updated: Aug 06, 2017 20:23 IST
HT Correspondent
Hindu activists affiliated with Rastriya Prajatantra Party Nepal try to break through the barricade as they march towards the Election Commission during their protest after the election commission rejected their campaigning for monarchy and Hinduism in Kathmandu on March 20.
Hindu activists affiliated with Rastriya Prajatantra Party Nepal try to break through the barricade as they march towards the Election Commission during their protest after the election commission rejected their campaigning for monarchy and Hinduism in Kathmandu on March 20.(REUTERS FILE)

The fourth largest party in Nepal parliament split on Sunday, six months into its unification, with a senior leader applying to the election commission for registering a new party.

Pashupati Shamsher Rana of the pro-Hindu Rastriya Prajatantra Party Nepal (RPP-N) registered the new Rastriya Prajatantra Party Prajatantrik, with support from the majority of lawmakers and central working committee.

Rana, who had unified his party with RPP-N on November 21, 2016, is related to the royal family of Gwalior. His daughter Devyani Rana, who was at the centre of the palace massacre in 2001, was married to a close relative of Congress leader Arjun Singh.

The split came after a protracted tussle between Rana and RPP-N chairman Kamal Thapa over issues including joining the government of Prime Minister Sher Bahadur Deuba.

Rana has been accusing Thapa of running the party in an “autocratic” manner and imposing decisions without consulting others.

RPP-N is the only mainstream party in Nepal that openly bats for restoration of a Hindu state but is divided over restoration of monarchy.

Thapa was in favour of restoration of both the Hindu state and monarchy while Rana only favoured a Hindu state.  

But ideological differences were not the only reason for the breakup, party leaders said.

Rana faction favoured joining the government while Thapa was reluctant to do so, they said.

“This is a very unfortunate decision to split the party within the six month of party unification. Those signatures submitted to EC are fake. I urge party cadres not to unravel from it,” Thapa tweeted after Rana registered the new party.

Once the process of registration of the new party is completed, it is likely to join the Deuba-led government.