LGBTs to field 62 candidates for CA polls
KATHMANDU, July 4: While the political parties are struggling to to create a favorable environment for the Constituent Assembly election, the Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual and Transgender (LGBTs) community has decided to field at least 62 candidates for the polls slated for November 19.
Announcing candidacies of 28 lesbians, 21 gays, 12 transgenders and a bisexual amidst a function here on Wednesday, Sunil Babu Pant, President of Blue Diamond Society said, the decision will pressurize the government, the Election Commission and the political parties to create a conducive environment for the crucial election.
Though the candidates represent 31 districts so far, the number of candidates might increase in the run up to the election, he informed.
However, the community is yet to decide whether to field the candidates under the proportional representation, first-past-the-post system or as the independent ones.
Pant said that they were holding comprehensive discussions with the political parties to ask them to field LGBT candidates.
´Most of the parties have already declared that they will field LGBT candidates for the upcoming election while some have assured us of justifiable representation in the party, Pant added.
One of the LGBTcandidates, Bhumika Shrestha said, ´As the political parties failed to provide us proper space in the past, we faced hard time to secure our identity.´
Stating that the times have changed, Shrestha added that more than 500,000 LGBT people have been openly fighting for their rights, though the actual number of the community is much higher.
´I have planned to fight the election from the Nepali Congress and hope that other parties will also include the LGBTs in the election, keeping in mind our population,´ she said.
But Pant, who is also a former CA member, said, ´I have not decided yet about my candidacy. I will decide about it later. We have high expectations from the upcoming election.´
When asked if the community had come up will come up with its own party, he said, as the different parties were in the position to include them in their party, they need not have their own party.
The community has also urged the Election Commission to make necessary arrangements to ease the participation of the community in the election.
The LGBT community has also called upon the political parties to incorporate programs in their electoral manifesto to promote their rights.