[Note: This article contains data visualizations that are best viewed on a larger screen, some contents maybe clipped off on mobile or tablet screens]
In an earlier article titled, “Analysis of Local Electoral Units in Nepal“, I showed the percentage of total population and the number of local electoral constituencies in each geographical region.
Local Electoral Constituencies by Geographical Region
It could be seen that Himal has 6.74% of total population but 17.21% of local electoral units. Similarly, Pahad has 42.89 % of total population but 46.90% of local electoral units. Likewise, Tarai has 50.36% of total population but only 35.88% of local electoral units. In summary, Himal and Pahad have a proportionally higher share of local units. Tarai has a significantly lower share of local units compared to its population.
In another article titled, “Local Electoral Units Per The Constitution“, I also described that the constitution recommends that delimitation of local electoral constituencies need to be be determined according to population as main basis and geography as secondary basis. Since the current demarcation does not meet this recommendation, which districts need more local electoral units to ensure those are in proportion to their population?
Districts That Need More Local Electoral Units
To ensure that the principle of proportional representation and the first amendment are met, the number of local electoral units need to be added in the following districts.
Udaypur, Bhaktapur, Kathmandu, Lalitpur, Makwanpur, Kaski, and Surkhet need more local electoral units.
Jhapa, Morang, Sunsari, Bara, Dhanusa, Mahottari, Parsa, Rautahat, Saptari, Sarlai, Siraha, Chitwan, Nawalparasi, Banke, Bardiya, Dandg, Kapilbastu, Rupandehi, Kailali, Kanchanpur need more local electoral units.
The largest gains would be made by Kathmandu, an astonishing 38 additional units, followed by Morang, Sunsari, Chitwan, Kaski, Rupandehi, and Kailali. It is interesting to note that the largest gains would be made by districts with a proportionately higher population of hill-origin inhabitants.
The demand for proportional representation is championed by marginalized groups such as Madhesis and Tharus. However, the ruling elites of hill origin are opposed to this demand. This is a strange conundrum where the largest beneficiaries are ostensibly not in favor of demarcating local units according to population.
Districts That Need More Local Electoral Units [with Kathmandu excluded]
One could argue that perhaps Kathmandu does not need more local units since it is already a (mega) metropolitan city with a concentration of political, economic, and military power. The local budget spent in Kathmandu is far more than its fair share. If that argument were considered valid then, the number of local electoral units to be added in other districts looks like the one shown below.
Kathmandu is excluded from the graph to allow an easier comparison across other districts. The numbers remain same but the comparisons can be made on a more reasonable scale.