KATHMANDU, March 7: Despite the conviction of House of Representatives Member Resham Chaudhary in the Tikapur lynchings case Wednesday, legal experts have said that he might not lose his parliamentary seat any time soon as he has the right to appeal.
They argue that since Chaudhary can appeal against the Kailali District Court verdict his seat will not fall vacant until there is a ruling from a court of last resort.
“As he can exercise his right to appeal at high courts including the Supreme Court, the district court verdict is not final. Until there is a final decision he will remain suspended from his seat but will not lose it,” said Chandra Kanta Gyawali, a constitutional expert.
Spokesman at the parliament secretariat Rojnath Pandey also said that Chaudhary might not lose his seat at once. Rule 244 of the House of Representatives Regulations says that MPs may not lose their seats in such cases until a final court decision.
Article 87 of the constitution says that any individual serving sentence for criminal offence or moral turpitude shall be disqualified from becoming an MP. Similarly, Article 89 says that a lawmaker’s seat shall fall vacant if the lawmaker is disqualified pursuant to Article 87.
But Article 90 of the constitution says that the constitutional bench at the Supreme Court shall take the final decision if any question arises over the vacancy of a parliamentary seat.
“Under this provision the constitutional court shall decide if any question is raised over the legitimacy of Chaudhary’s continuation as member of parliament,” said constitutional expert Gyawali.