Dr. Baburam Bhattarai has been sworn in as the new Prime Minister of Nepal by the President Dr. Ram Baran Yadav at the President’s residence in Sital Niwa. Nepal’s Parliament elected the senior Maoist leader on Sunday followed by the administration of the oath of office and secrecy at a special function on Monday.
Senior political leaders, including the outgoing Prime Minister Jhala Nath Khanal, heads of diplomatic missions, security agencies and senior government officials were present at the programme.
Dr Bhattarai, at 57 years old, has become the 35th Prime Minister of Nepal. He received 340 votes out of 575 in parliament. His rival? Nepali Congress Parliamentary Party leader Ram Chandra Poudel, only received 235 votes.
Speaker Subas Chandra Nembang announced the results which allow Dr. Bhattarai to replace CPN-UML Chairman Jhala Nath Khanal who resigned from the post of prime minister on 14th August 2011.
Bhattarai is the Vice Chairman of the Communist Party of Nepal (Maoist), otherwise known as UCPN- Maoist. He is widely recognized for his political and intellectual activism with a decade of experience of underground politics gathered during the 1996- 2006 insurgency.
In the first ever Nepali Constituent Assembly elections held in April 2008, he was elected from Gorkha constituency no. 2 and served as Finance Minister in the subsequently formed Maoist government led by Pushpa Kamal Dahal. An alumnus of Jawaharlal Nehru University, New Delhi, Dr Bhattarai has a PhD degree in Regional Development Planning.