KATHMANDU, Dec 26: The government has recommended Laxmi Bahadur Nirala, who served as Attorney General during then King Gyanendra’s direct rule, as a member of the Judicial Council.
The decision has left even the lawyers close to ruling Nepal Communist Party (NCP) expressing their strong dissatisfaction.
Nirala has been recommended to fill a position that fell vacant following the resignation of Padam Prasad Baidik earlier this month.
Sources familiar with the development said Nirala was recommended as JC member from the prime minister’s own quota.
Nirala served as Attorney General for four months from December 26, 2005 during King Gyanendra’s direct rule. In 2005, Nirala was appointed as Attorney General after the incumbent Attorney General Pawan Kumar Ojha was appointed justice at Supreme Court.
Nirala, who practiced law while staying in Janakpur, was appointed as Attorney General. As a senior advocate, he would also visit Kathmandu to advocate cases at the Supreme Court.
It is found that Nirala exceeds the age limit set by the constitution. Although the constitution has not set exact age for JC member, it clearly mentions that the perks and benefits will be similar to those of Supreme Court justice.
“It does not mean he lacks qualification. He is already above 65. Since the constitution itself says that the position will be similar to the justice of Supreme Court, remaining other things will be known after seeing his performance,” said former Attorney General Raman Shrestha.