Supreme Court Rejects Petition To Stop President From Issuing Ordinance

Supreme Court Rejects Petition To Stop President From Issuing Ordinance

Dec. 17, 2022, 8:07 a.m.

The Supreme Court has refused to register a writ petition seeking to stop President Bidhya Devi Bhandari from issuing the ordinance brought by the government to withdraw government cases against political leaders and cadres.

The Supreme Court administration has said that unless the ordinance, which is at the president's office, is issued, the SC cannot examine its constitutionality.In his refusal note, SC registrar Narayan Panthi has said that petitioners had approached the SC to check the constitutionality of a law on the basis of mere suspicion.

He called the petition premature. The government decided to bring the ordinance to withdraw cases against people who had used violent methods to advance their political cause in the past but later renounced violence and expressed commitment to pursue peaceful politics.

If issued, the ordinance will benefit Resham Chaudhary, who was convicted in Kailali carnage and is lodged at Dillibazar prison.The ordinance will also benefit some cadres of Madhes-centric parities, including CK Rautled Janmat Party, and Netra Bikarm Chand-led Communist Party of Nepal cadres against whom cases have been filed by the government.

Petitioners have argued that if the ordinance is issued by the president, those responsible for killing eight police personnel and a two-year-old child on 24 August 2015 in Kailali and some other accused will get off scotfree in the garb of politics. Citing past precedents, petitioners said if cases filed against political cadres were withdrawn, it could create obstruction in criminal justice.

They said the court had directed the government in response to a case filed by Advocate Gopi Bahadur Bhandari against it in which the court observed that the government could not haphazardly withdraw government cases, particularly those listed in Section 4 of the government manual issued in 1996.The petitioners, Advocate Kaplidev Dhakal and others, stated that if the ordinance was issued by the president, it would violate national and international laws.

Petitioners demanded that the ordinance sent to the president be repealed and a directive be issued to the president asking her not to issue the ordinance.Dhakal told THT that he would challenge the SC administration's refusal to register his writ petition.When asked if the president was not satisfied with the ordinance, President's Media Expert Tika Prasad Dhakal said the head of state was in consultation with the government.

"All parties agree that Resham Chaudhary has not got justice. It is also right that when parties led by CK Raut and Netra Bikram Chand have joined the political mainstream their cadres should not languish in jail, but everything has to be done in accordance with democratic norms and values,"Dhakal added. Unlike in the past, when the president would not take much time to issue an ordinance, this time the head of state has not given her assent to the ordinance even after days of receiving it

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