RJP, Socialist unify to avert split in latter

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Rastriya Janata Party Nepal (RJP) and Socialist Party Nepal have hastily announced unification late Wednesday night to prevent split in the latter.

The new party will be named Janata Samajwadi and will use the flag of Socialist Party and election symbol of RJP, umbrella. Mahantha Thakur will be the top ranked leader.

The two parties were in discussion for a long time but hastily announced unification Wednesday after seven lawmakers of Socialist prepared to split the party capitalizing on the ordinance brought by the government on Monday that made splitting of parties easier.

The government on Monday brought an ordinance allowing splitting of a party with support of 40 percent in either the parliamentary party or the central committee. The act about political parties requires support of 40 percent in both the parliamentary party and the central committee to split any political party.

Socialist has 17 seats in the House of Representatives and seven lawmakers would just make 40 percent of the parliamentary party.

The united party, if the unification holds, will have a total of 34 seats including 17 of RJP. Resham Chaudhari of RJP, however, is suspended after being sentenced in a criminal case.

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