A partner in Nepal’s ruling coalition splits; no immediate threat to government

The Janata Samajwadi Party-Nepal (JSPN), a coalition partner in Nepal’s new government, has formally split on Monday after the country’s Election Commission granted legitimate right over the party to one of the two warring factions

Jul 26, 2021
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Nepal

The Janata Samajwadi Party-Nepal (JSPN), a coalition partner in Nepal’s new government, has formally split on Monday after the country’s Election Commission granted legitimate right over the party to one of the two warring factions. The government though faces no immediate threat as it enjoys support from both factions. 

The JSP-N came into existence in April 2020 after a dramatic and hasty merger of the Samajwadi Party Nepal and the Rashtriya Janata Party. However, the party's leadership structure had not been clearly stated at the time, which ultimately led to the split. 

The party soon divided into two factions: the Thakur-Mahato and Yadav-Bhattarai. The Thakur-Mahato faction backed KP Sharma Oli, the former prime minister, when he dissolved the house in May. Many leaders of the Thakur-Mahato faction later assumed Cabinet posts briefly as their appointments were nullified by a Supreme Court order. 

However, the Yadav Bhattarai faction opposed Oli and supported the petition in the Supreme Court to nullify the House dissolution. 

Once the House was reinstated by the apex court early this month, and Deuba was appointed prime minister, both the factions extended their support to the new government.  

Earlier this month, the two sides had decided to split and urged the Election Commission to decide which side would carry the legitimacy as the JSPN.

The poll body today conducted a poll among the members of the party’s Central Executive Committee. The Baburam Bhattarai-Upendra Yadav faction of the splitting Janata Samajbadi Party Nepal will be legitimate, announced the Election Commission. 

Among the total 34 MPs of the party, the Bhattarai-Yadav faction has 17 on its side while the other faction has the backing of 15 MPs. 

With the decision, the Thakur-Mahato side was asked to register a new party with a new name if it wanted to continue as a party. Political experts suggested after Monday’s decision, more and more MPs would join the Bhattarai-Yadav faction. 

(SAM)