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New Nepali PM Dahal faces parliamentary confidence vote

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New Nepali PM Dahal faces parliamentary confidence vote

Nepali PM confidence vote
The new Nepali prime minister Pushpa Kamal Dahal, a former guerilla leader, faces a vote of confidence in parliament today. Photo: Rojan Shrestha/NurPhoto/Getty Images

Nepal’s newly elected Prime Minister Pushpa Kamal Dahal will face a vote of confidence in parliament today.

Also known as ‘Prachanda,’ Dahal is required by the Nepali constitution to face a parliamentary vote of confidence within a month of his swearing in. As Prachanda was sworn in on December 26, he is well within the time prescribed.

Nepal went to the polls on November 20 with Prachanda and his Communist Party of Nepal (Maoist Centre) initially allying with the Nepali Congress, led by then-Prime Minister Sher Bahadur Deuba, in a coalition known as the Democratic Left Alliance. The Alliance won 136 seats — two short of the majority required to form government. When power sharing talks broke down, Prachanda staked his claim to power with the support of seven other parties, including opposition party Communist Party of Nepal (Unified Marxist -Leninist).

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Expect Prachanda to win the vote of confidence comfortably, as he was sworn in with the backing of 169 members. The alliance is also likely to remain stable owing to the main parties’ similar communist ideologies. Regionally, this coalition is likely to create tensions in the country’s relations with India and tilt them further towards fostering strategic relations with China.

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