chapter  27
24 Pages

Political Parties, Elections, and Leaders

WithRobert C. Oberst, Yogendra K. Malik, Charles H. Kennedy, Ashok Kapur, Mahendra Lawoti, Syedur Rahman, Ahrar Ahmad

This chapter evaluates the Nepali political parties based on the various functions they are expected to perform. The political parties that called themselves communist have in fact been increasing their vote share since the first general election in 1959. An interesting feature of the Nepali party system is that despite the decline of the communist ideology after the collapse of the Soviet Union and the Warsaw Pact, the Nepali communist parties are going very strong. There are several other small communist parties, such as the Nepal Workers Peasants Party, the Communist Party of Nepal (CPN), and the National People's Front, with some having a few representatives in the Constituent Assembly. Most of the fringe parties lie between the Unified CPN and the CPN in their ideological orientations. The former brought a mass-based organization and the younger generation of communist leaders, whereas the CPN provided well-known leaders from the communist movement.