Nepali Congress, the political party of caretaker Prime Minister Sher Bahadur Deuba has secured the highest number of seats in the November 20 election as the vote count nears a conclusion.

At 53 the Nepali Congress has got the single highest number of seats under First-Past-The-Post (FPTP) even though it had contested the election forming an alliance of five different parties, according to the latest figures of the country’s Election Commission.

Opposition CPN-UML (Communist Party of Nepal- Unified Marxist Leninist) has fallen to the second spot with 42 seats by 11:15 am. Member of the ruling coalition CPN-Maoist Center has stood third with 17 seats, CPN-Unified Socialist fourth with 10 seats, Janata Samajbadi, Rastriya Prajatantra and Rastriya Swatantra Party with 7 seats each.

Along with the FPTP, the vote count of Proportionate Representation is also underway where opposition CPN-UML has garnered over 2.5 million votes while Nepali Congress is following with 2.3 million votes (as of 11:30 AM-Local Time).

The Rastriya Swatantra Party has stood third in the line crossing the mark of 1 million votes with the Maoist Center in the fourth position crossing the mark of one million in the same time frame. According to EC’s preliminary estimate, voter turnout was 61 percent.

Under Proportionate Representation, the provision has it that a party is required to get at least three per cent of the total number of votes cast to get seats meaning a single party in these elections should get over 320,000 votes to secure seats.

Making the division of seats on the basis of the PR votes also, Nepal still is going to get a hung parliament with parties struggling to secure 50 per cent seats in 275 seated House of Representatives. Out of the 275 seats 165 members are being elected from the FPTP system while the 110 will make their way into the lower house under the PR system.

The Constitution promulgated has given authority to President to choose Prime Minister from the party which has the highest seats in the parliament. The process starts after the Election Commission submits its final results to the President who is expected to be done by the end of this year.

The Nepali Constitution also has the provision of electing the leader from the major party in the parliament to be nominated as Prime Minister and can form the government.
It has the provision for the appointment of a new Prime Minister in case any of the parties failed to garner a complete majority. It has stated that the President can appoint the leader of a party who can complete the majority mark by getting support from other incumbent parties.

But the government formed after garnering support from two or more two parties is mandated to testify the support in parliament within 30 days of its formation. In case the government fails to get endorsed then the President should give another chance to garner a majority and upon the repeated failure the President can dissolve the House of Representative and call for another election within 6 months.

The Nepali Constitution also has fixed the number of ministers in the center with a number limit of 25 seats inclusive of the Prime Minister, Deputy Prime Minister, Ministers, State Ministers and Minister Aide. (ANI)