Judiciary in crisis: 13 Supreme Court Justices boycott bench, seek CJ’s resignation

NL Today

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Kathmandu: Nepal’s judiciary has been pushed to an unprecedented crisis with 13 Justices boycotting the bench expressing their dissatisfaction with Chief Justice Cholendra Shumsher Rana.

A total of 13 Justices who were present at the Supreme Court boycotted the bench assigned to them for today. During a meeting held today, the Justices decided to meet CJ Rana on Tuesday and seek his resignation.

A full court meeting summoned by CJ could not be held on Monday as 13 Justices and officials of the Nepal Bar Association were engaged in separate meetings. The Justices including senior Justice Deepak Kumar Karki, Meera Khadka, Harikrishna Karki, Vishwambhar Shrestha, Dr Ananda Mohan Bhattarai, Prakash Man Singh Raut, Bam Kumar Shrestha, Tanka Bahadur Moktan, Prakash Kumar Dhungana, Sushmalata Mathema, Kumar Regmi, Hari Prasad Phunyal and Manoj Kumar Sharma were present in the meeting.

The Chief Justice had summoned a full court meeting today to discuss on implementation of a report submitted by Justice Hari Krishna Karki and the title of senior advocates.

The meeting could not be held as 13 Justices sat for another meeting snubbing the meeting summoned by CJ Rana.

A total of 14 Justices had boycotted bench after a tea break on Sunday.

Judicial forums, media, social media users and various stakeholders have been demanding that CJ Rana should resign voluntarily and the House of Representatives should impeach CJ Rana if he denies.

The Chief Justice was dragged into controversy after Nepali Congress leader Gajendra Hamal became Minister for Industry allegedly from Rana’s quota. However, Hamal resigned after two days of his appointment.