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Nepal goes to polls to elect representatives in municipal and village councils
On Sunday, Nepal is going to polls to elect representatives in municipal and village councils.

But that is not why the local elections of Nepal are in news, they are in news because this is the first time in about two decades that such polls are being conducted. And the world is largely seeing them as a sign of stability in a country whose democratic pillars are increasingly fracturing.

Since the elections were not held for almost two decades, the strategic local posts were gradually occupied by bureaucrats who were elected by the government rather than by being elected by the people. 

As per reports, the first phase of the voting has been largely successful despite the security forces detonating two explosive devices near the capital of the country. 

The Maoist insurgency that has till date claimed over 16,000 lives had left the situation in the country undesirable for polls to be conducted. 

As per a report in Kathmandu Post, 4,956,925 registered voters are eligible to cast their votes in these elections. A total of 6,642 polling stations have been set up across Nepal  where the elections are being conducted in 186 village councils, 92 municipalities, four metropolitan cities and one sub metropolis.

A month later, on June 14, second phase of the polls will be held. But with the date of announcing the budget near to the second phase of polls, the Opposition has been demanding that the second phase of the polls to be preponed to ensure a fair & free election. 

To ensure safety in the elections, the government has deployed 64,000 police personnel including Nepal Police, Armed Police Force (APF), temporary police and intelligence officers. The government has also roped in 31,000 soldiers from Nepal Army. It has also kept choppers on standby in Kathmandu, Hetauda, Pokhara and Surkhet.

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