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Bhutan Peoples' Party

Last modified: 2009-05-30 by ian macdonald
Keywords: bhutan | bhutan peoples party |
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[Bhutan Peoples' Party] image by Ivan Sache, 11 April 2009

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Meaning and Description

The Bhutan Peoples' Party (BPP), the first political party in Bhutan, was founded on 2 June 1990 in West Bengal (India), to represent the Buthanese citizens of Nepalese origin (lotshampas) who felt discriminated by the absolute power and under-represented in the institutions of the country. Involved in the organization of mass protest rallies in the south of the country in September-October 1990, the BPP (together with other parties formed at the same period) was declared illegal, as a terrorist group, and banned form the country. The party exiled in Nepal, where his founder and first president, R.K. Budathoki (1957-2001) was murdered in a refugee camp of eastern Nepal on 9 September 2001. Still in exile in Nepal, the BPP asked to be registered as a political party when mutlipartism was set up in Bhutan; turned down by the Election Commission in January 2008, the BPP was prevented to compete in the first elections ever organized in Bhutan in March 2008. Indeed, only two "loyal" (pro-monarchy) parties were allowed to compete.

The flag of the party is described as follows on the party's website:
"The flag of Bhutan Peoples' Party is divided into two halves diagonally. The upper half which is pure white in colour with a yellow five sided star symbolizes the party's infallible respect for peace, non-violence and harmonious, co-existence; while the yellow star signifies the Royal Institution as the constitutional head of the country. The other half portion which is green in colour, indicates Party commitment towards economic prosperity and sound environment."

Ivan Sache, 11 April 2009