The total number of active members of Nepali Congress (NC) has crossed 800,000 and the main opposition party is aiming to expand that to one million for the 14th general convention.
The number of active members, who vote at the local level to elect party representatives that eventually are elected representatives for the general convention after subsequent elections, has crossed 800,000 when districts including Saptari, Bara, Dhanusha, Sindhupalchowk, Bardiya, West Rukum, Dadeldhura, Pyuthan and Kavre have yet to submit the complete numbers.
The other districts have almost finished distribution and renewal of active membership and entered the details in the software that the party is using for data.
Secretary of the party's central probe committee for active membership Keshav Rijal told Setopati that the center has received details of 800,317 active members until now. The party has received 1,200 complaints about grievances related to distribution of active membership until now.
The party has posted the name of active members on its website and given a deadline of June 20 for lodging complaints if anyone has received membership against rules.
The party was to hold election at the ward level from June 20 but that will now be postponed by a month. It has already proposed to postpone the 14th general convention scheduled to be held from August 23-26 in Kathmandu by nine days citing the raging COVID-19 pandemic. The general convention is now proposed to be held from September 1-4.
The central committee meeting on June 17 will endorse the proposal.
The general convention looked unlikely to be held from August 23-26 as scheduled amidst the raging pandemic with the party yet to finish renewal of active membership and distribution of new ones.
Senior Leader Ram Chandra Paudel and others have been recently urging Deuba to make arrangements to hold the general convention even during the pandemic. Issuing a statement on Wednesday, Deuba assured that it will be held by mid-September.
Deuba, whose four-year term expired in March 2020, had given himself a one-year term extension which meant his term expired on March 3, 2021. The party had also decided to hold the next general convention from February 19-22, 2021. But it could not be held due to the COVID-19 pandemic.
NC delayed the general convention further taking help from the Constitution which has a provision of a six-month extension for parties in special circumstances. "Provided that in case election of the office bearers could not be held within five years due to situation arising out of special circumstance, there shall be no hindrance to make provision in the statute of a political party to hold such election within a period of six months," states the provision in Article 269(4b) of the Constitution related to political parties.
The party will violate the Constitution if the general convention were to be delayed beyond September.