Shankar Pokhrel (Nepali: शंकर पोखरेल) (born 1964) is the first Chief Minister of Lumbini Province, one of seven federal states in Nepal.He was elected as the central secretary of Communist Party of Nepal (Unified Marxist–Leninist) from 1998 to 2008. He was also appointed as Minister for Information and Communications. He has also worked as Kathmandu Valley Committee member of CPN-UML. Pokhrel was elected as Member of Parliament in the legislative election of 1994 from Dang–3. In 2008, he was inducted to the CA via PR system. He had also contested from Dang-4 in the CA Election 2013 representing CPN-UML.
On September 6, 2016, Pokhrel received widespread criticism from Nepalese social media users for mocking Madheshis, based on their skin color in a controversial tweet. Madheshis hail from the southern part of Nepal and form about a third of the population of Nepal. For over a year now, they have been protesting against the controversial new constitution promulgated by Communist Party of Nepal (UML), the political party to which Pokhrel belongs.
Later on September 6, owing to some major criticism, Pokhrel removed the tweet and in an interview by a local newspaper claimed that people "deliberately misinterpreted" his tweet. Pokhrel clarified that he had protested the tradition of using black as a sign of protest, which he said was related to racist European mindset, and tried to justify that he was not against people of dark complexion.