Bidya Devi Bhandari re-elected Nepal's president

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With this President Bhandari is the first President of federal Nepal.

According to the figures released by the Election Commission, her rival, Laxmi Rai, who was fielded by the opposition Nepali Congress, was defeated with a wide margin.

This is unedited, unformatted feed from the Press Trust of India wire. Bhandari received the support of more than two-third lawmakers in the federal and provincial assemblies. She will begin her second term as President with this victory. With 148 lawmakers in the Federal Parliament and 243 in Provincial Assemblies, the CPN-UML commands a total vote of 23,356.

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Her victory was expected as her nomination in the Presidential elections was backed by the ruling left alliance CPN-UML and CPN, Sanghiya Samajbadi forum, and other parties. The Rastriya Janata Party, which has been raising issues related to Madhesh, has also said it will vote for Bhandari in the election.

An electoral college, including members of parliament and provincial assemblies, will vote in the election.

Counting of votes started at 4 pm. She is also the first Nepali President to be elected as the country's president twice.

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As Nepal's political map was being redrawn after the end of the brutal Maoist insurgency in 2006 and overthrow of the king two years later, Bhandari campaigned hard to bring woman's voices to parliament. Before becoming president she was a powerful leader of the Communist Party of Nepal Unified Marxist-Leninist.

During her previous tenure as the President, she had had a fair performance, save the controversy over delaying the ordinance of the National Assembly and not approving the nominees to the NA recommended by the erstwhile Sher Bahadur Deuba led government.

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