Study Material | Test Series
Drishti IAS
call1800-121-6260 / 011-47532596
Drishti The Vision Foundation
(A unit of VDK Eduventures Pvt. Ltd.)
Maoist Leader Prachanda Nepal's New PM
Aug 08, 2016

Maoist chief Pushpa Kamal Dahal, better known Prachanda who is known for his-anti India stance was elected as Nepal’s Prime Minister on Wednesday with the support of largest party Nepali Congress. He won 363 votes out of the 573 cast in the 595-member parliament.

  • Prachanda led a decade-long Maoist insurgency before transforming the rebel movement into a political party after a 2006 peace deal.
  • It is Prachanda's second time as prime minister of the Himalayan nation. His first tenure ended in 2009 when he resigned over differences with the president on the sacking of an army chief.
  • Prachanda led a communist insurgency against the government for a decade until 2006, when the rebels signed a UN-monitored peace agreement. More than 17,000 people were killed during the insurgency.
  • Nepali Congress President Sher Bahadur Deuba had proposed the 61-year-old CPN-Maoist Centre president as the candidate for new Prime Minister, while Maoist leader Krishna Bahadur Mahara seconded Deuba.
  • Three Madhesi leaders—Upendra Yadav of Social Forum-Nepal, Sarvendra Nath Shukla of Tarai Madhesh Democratic Party and Laxman Lal Karna of Sadbhawana Party—had supported Prachanda's candidacy.
  • The Madhesi alliance decided to support Prachanda's candidacy after a 3-point agreement with the Nepali Congress (NC) and CPN (Maoist Centre) but will not join the government.

Nepal was faced with a fresh political turmoil after embattled premier K.P. Oli resigned from the top job on July 24. Oli tendered his resignation after two key ruling alliance partners—Madhesi People's Rights Forum-Democratic and Rastriya Prajatantra Party—decided to support the no-confidence motion tabled against him by the Nepali Congress (NC) and the CPN-Maoist Centre led by Prachanda.
Madhesi Parties to Support from Outside
a
Madhesi parties will not join Nepal's new government under Prime Minister Prachanda and will extend support from outside. They would consider joining only after their demands are met through constitutional amendments.

  • The three forces, CPN-Maoist, Nepali Congress and the United Democratic Madhesi Front agreed that the new government would table a Constitutional amendment bill in the Parliament on the basis of political consensus to address the demands of the Madhesi parties over the country's new Constitution.
  • The three sides engaged in two days-long meeting before inking the three-point deal that ensured Madhesi Front's support to the 61-year-old CPN-Maoist Centre president's premiership candidacy.
  • They have also agreed to form a probe committee led by a former justice of the Supreme Court that would look into the incidents of violence that took place during last year's Madhesi agitation led by the Front.
  • Those killed in the protests would be declared martyrs by the government and the kins of victims would be provided with financial assistance.
  • The government would also provide free treatment to those injured during the protests.
  • The cadres of the agitating Madhesi and ethnic groups, who got arrested during the protests, would be released and cases filed against them would be withdrawn, as per the agreement.
  • The third point of agreement stated that the Madhesis, whose combined strength is 42 in the 595-member Parliament, would vote in favour of Prachanda in the Premier's election.

From Guerrilla Chief to Nepal Prime Minister

  • Born to Muktiram Dahal and Bhawani Dahal in 1954 in Kashki district in western Nepal, Prachanda entered active politics in 1979 by joining CPN-M. He became central member of the party in 1985 and elected general secretary of CPN-M in 1990.
  • For Maoist chief Prachanda, whose first premiership stint ended after a run-in with the army, life has come full circle as the former guerrilla leader takes over as the Prime Minister for a second time to steer his country marred by deep divisions over the new Constitution.
  • The career of 61-year-old Pushpa Kamal Dahal, better known as Prachanda (the fierce one) has been characterised by his ceaseless battle to turn his country into a socialist-communist people's republic.
  • It was for this ideal that he fought a bloody 10-year war against the monarchy, going on to serve a brief stint as prime minister from 2008 to 2009 before a disagreement with the military over his attempt to sack the army chief brought his period in office to an early end.
  • During the period of monarchy, Prachanda spent years hiding in Nepal's jungles, directing a guerrilla war against the state that ended with a 2006 peace deal.
  • He headed the first Maoist-led government in the country. Prachanda also led the former rebels in their decade-long armed struggle against the 240-year-old monarchy.
  • Remaining underground for 24 years, very little was known about the elusive leader who scripted the 2006 peace process with Nepali Congress patriarch G.P. Koirala before the former rebels' surprise victory in the April 10 Constituent Assembly polls.
  • Prachanda's elevation comes at a time when the country is battling deep divisions over the country's new Constitution.
  • Nepali Congress and CPN Maoist Centre signed a three- point agreement with the Madhesi Front to secure support from the Madhesi parties for their bid to form a new government led by Prachanda, who was the only official candidate for the race.
  • The Prime Minister's post had been left vacant since last week after CPN-UML chairman K P Sharma Oli tendered his resignation following the Maoist's withdrawal of support to the coalition government.

The former guerrilla leader, who was inspired by Peru's Shining Path communist movement, is known to have an anti-India stance which seems to have softened of late with observers saying that his elevation may be good for Indo-Nepal ties which experienced turbulence under Oli.


Helpline Number : 87501 87501
To Subscribe Newsletter and Get Updates.