21-year-old woman youngest to file candidacy for Kathmandu mayor

Indo Asian News Service

Kathmandu, May 2 (IANS) As Nepal gears up for conducting local level elections after a hiatus of two decades, 21-year-old Ranju Darshana on Tuesday was the youngest candidate to file candidacy for the post of mayor of Kathmandu Metropolitan City (KMC).

She was also the only female candidate to vie for the post of Kathmandu mayor after filing of nominations in 283 local units under 34 districts on Tuesday, Xinhua news agency reported.

The Bibeksheel Nepali Party picked Darshana for the post, claiming her as the youngest mayor candidate in Nepal's election history. She has been active in politics through this party for the last three years.

Born in the capital and pursuing her Bachelor's degree in Development Studies, Ranju wants to make Kathmandu a liveable city and a metropolis in the true sense.

"Right now, Kathmandu is a metropolitan city only nominally. Our infrastructure is poor, the air that we are breathing is killing us, and there are cases of corruption. Addressing such issues, I am here to make Kathmandu the most beautiful city in the world," Darshana told Xinhua.

For mayor and deputy mayor of KMC, over a dozen of independent candidates and candidates from various political parties filed nominations.

"I have been receiving overwhelming response from all quarters of society. People have seen me as a ray of hope, which has boosted my energy to step ahead. I am hopeful of my victory," Ranju said.

Kishor Thapa, a former government secretary and an independent candidate for the mayor of Kathmandu, said: "My vision of Kathmandu is clean, secured and inclusive Kathmandu. I want to revive the historical glory of Kathmandu and want to make the city clean, green and open."

The first phase of local elections will be held on May 14 while the second phase has been scheduled for June 14.

According to the Election Commission, around five million electors are eligible to cast their votes at 7,200 polling centres in the first phase of local elections.

--IANS

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