Vote counting has begun in the presidential election held on Thursday after a total of 831 lawmakers voted to elect a new president.
Assistant election officer Amrita Sharma said that 313 federal lawmakers and 518 provincial lawmakers cast their votes in the election.
According to Sharma, 32 provincial assembly members – 28 from Rastriya Prajatantra Party (RPP), three from Nepal Workers and Peasants Party (NWPP), and one from Janata Samajwadi Party (JSP) – abstained from voting.
There are 275 House of Representatives members and 59 National Assembly members. Among them, 14 lawmakers from RPP and Prem Suwal of NWPP remained neutral.
Nepali Congress lawmaker Chandra Bhandari and CPN (Maoist Center) lawmaker Barsha Man Pun could not vote as they are undergoing treatment. CPN-UML lawmaker Laxmi Koiri is absconding while JSP lawmaker Shahnaz Rahman died recently.
The voting was held from 10 AM to 3 PM Thursday.
Senior leader of Nepali Congress Ram Chandra Paudel, who is supported by eight parties, and CPN-UML leader Subash Chandra Nembang are vying to become the third president of Nepal.
The Election Commission is preparing to announce the election result by 7 PM Thursday.