‘Dummy’ candidates in fray

- Aman Koirala, SARLAHI

Nov 5, 2017-Independent candidates outnumber the official nominees of political parties for the upcoming provincial and federal elections in Sarlahi.

There are some women who have filed their candidacies as independents. Of the 77 nominations for federal election, 44 are of independent candidates. Among the 138 candidates for provincial elections in total, 75 are independent, according to the District Election Office.

Some contestants, however, have motives other than winning the elections: helping other candidates--they can be used as representatives during the election and vote counting. In one case, a party has nominated a man whose elder brother is an independent candidate. Narendra Prasad Singh, the elder brother of Birendra Prasad Singh--the provincial candidate of the Nepali Congress in Constituency-4 (B)--is an independent. Contestants who hope to win the elections have fielded “dummy” candidates to acquire additional facilities during the election.

Civil society leader Ugrakanta Jha said the practice is not new. “There’s a trend of having dummy candidates for use as representatives during the vote count. The candidates can also use more vehicles,” said Jha, meaning that an aspirant who can spend a lot uses such candidates. Jha said the “dummy” candidates also canvass for votes for the main candidate. Such candidates are fielded also to steal votes from the opponents.

Published: 05-11-2017 07:46

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