Kathmandu: Bidhya Devi Bhandari, vice chairman of the ruling CPN-UML, was on Wednesday elected president of Nepal, making her the first woman to occupy the vaunted post.
Bhandari defeated Nepali Congress nominee Kul Bahadur Gurung in the presidential poll to elect the second president of the Himalayan nation, The election result was announced in parliament by Speaker Onsari Gharti Magar.
A former defence minister, Bhandari is a cancer survivor and widow of late communist leader Madan Bhandari, who died in 1991 in a yet unexplained road accident.
The incumbent, Ram Baran Yadav, who belonged to Nepali Congress, was elected president in 2008 after the first elections to the Constituent Assembly.
Under the country’s new republican federal Constitution, promulgated on September 20, it was mandatory to elect new president and vice-president, prime minister, and parliament speaker and deputy speaker.