Newly appointed Youth and Sports Minister of Gandaki Rajiv Gurung (Deepak Manange) has taken oath of office and secrecy. Manange was administered the oath of office by state chief Amik Sherchan today. He was appointed Sports Minister by Chief Minister Prithvi Subba Gurung today.
Rajiv was an independent candidate in the state assembly election held on December 26, 2008. He won the election with the support of the then UML. From Manang’s province (b), he has won the state assembly by getting 1410 votes. His rival Karma Gurung got 1,020 votes.
Although he was elected, he was not allowed to take the oath along with other state assembly members. Instead, the police arrested him on April 20, 2008 in a case related to the killing industry. He was released on December 20, 2008 as per the provision of fighting outside the case of less than 10 years imprisonment.
Although he applied for the oath on December 26 of the same year, he was sworn in only 14 months after the election. Netranath Adhikari, the Speaker of the Provincial Assembly, had administered the oath of office to Rajiv on January 29, 2008.
Politics in Gandaki has changed after the Nepali Congress, the CPN-Maoist Center and the Janata Samajwadi Party filed a no-confidence motion against Gandaki Chief Minister Prithvi Subba Gurung. After winning the election as an independent candidate from Manang, the UML withdrew its candidate and supported him in the election.
Looking at the arithmetic of the Gandaki Provincial Assembly, even if Manange is made a minister, the ruling UML does not have the required number to defeat the no-confidence motion against Chief Minister Prithvi Subba Gurung.
Because, in the 60-member state assembly, Congress has 15 seats, Maoists have 11 seats, Janamorcha has 3 seats and Jaspa has 2 seats. All four parties have stated they will vote in favor of the no-confidence motion. Adding Deepak Manange, UML has only 28 votes. The Maoists also have a speaker who can cast a decisive vote in case of a tie.