POKHARA, Dec 8: The Nepali Congress outweighed CPN-UML at Manang. However, this time, UML has broken Nepali Congress’s win after Polden Chopang Gurung, CPN-UML’s district chairperson defeated NC’s Tek Bahadur Gurung. Polden garnered 2300 votes while Gurung had 2021 votes. In 2064’s election, Dev Gurung of CPN-Maoist had won the election.
During the elections of 2048, 2051 and 2056, UML had no nominations for the election. In the first constituent assembly election, the party received only 47 votes. During second constituent assembly of 2070, the party secured only 70 votes.
The left alliance had helped to secure UML’s win in Manag, Gurung said. “This also reflects trust that voters have shown us.” With the win, Gurung said that he’d work to improve UML’s presence in the district.
“We were weak before. That’s why we lagged behind,” Gurung said in a telephone conversation, “However, this time; we’ve won and come forward because of the trust of voters.”
In his district, Gurung is also known as a prominent apple farmer and tourism entrepreneur. Following his win, Gurung said that he’d focus to upgrade roads and focus on tourism, agriculture and water resources.
“The road to Manang is treacherous. We will try to black-top it, or expand it,” he said adding that he would also promote additional farming, including potatoes and lettuce. “In doing so, we will promote modern agricultural practices.”
Residents of Manag have always ranked UML at the bottom of top three. Nepali Congress and RPP led the political race. However, after majority RPP candidates entered UML, it was then that UML worked to reform its party.
Dipak Manange and UML
While UML had proposed Rajib Gurung, known as Dipak Manange as its candidate for Province, it backfired due to accusations of criminal involvement and pending court cases. As a result, UML ‘silently’ backed Manange. However, after Manange said that he had received a clean chit from the court—he filed his candidacy as independent candidate for Province B.
UML had initially proposed Khanda Lama Gurung as its candidate. However, it later recalled its candidate to support Dipak.
“After three months of attempt, I secured a win,” he said, adding that he now would work for the citizens. While Dipak is more associated with a ‘don’, recently, he reached voters as somebody who would work for the society.
Manange plans to bring packaged development plan in Manag. “Tourism will be a top agenda,” he said. Manange received 1410 votes while his Nepali Congress competitor secured 1020 votes.
UML won by threats: Nepali Congress
Chinta Ghale, who defeated UML’s Dorge Dandul Gurung accused UML for threatening voters and buying votes. Karma Gurung, Dipak Manange’s opponent from Nepali Congress said that the latter had threatened voters under the police eyes to win the election. “As the district is remote, administration doesn’t reach everywhere. This is what the Left Alliance tapped to threaten voters and win.”