KATHMANDU, Feb 15: The Judicial Council (JC) on Thursday formed a probe panel led by Supreme Court justice Hari Krishna Karki to probe into the bribery allegations against Kathmandu District Court (KDC) Judge Babukaji Baniya.
Baniya has already been summoned by the JC after KDC staffer Bholanath Chalise who had allegedly taken Rs 500,000 in bribe from a client revealed that the bribe money was to be shared between him and judge Baniya.
Chalise was booked by the Commission for the Investigation of Authority (CIAA) for receiving the bribe in connection with a road accident case but he clearly recorded his statement stating that he was supposed to share a major share of the bribe with judge Baniya.
After depositing a bail of Rs 500,000 at the Special Court on Thursday, Chalise was released as per the order of a three-member bench of judges Dwarikaman Joshee, Ratna Bahadur Bagchand and Chandi Raj Dhakal.
Baniya has been relived from his adjudicating authority and has been facing the investigation since the last few days.
District judges Bishwamangal Aatreya and Omkar Prasad Upadhayay have also been facing investigations. The JC has also been investigating Chief Judge of Biratnagar High Court, Kulratna Bhurtel and other judges in relation to their involvement in supporting the accused of 33-kgs gold smuggling case. They have been accused of releasing the gold smuggling accused on bail by overturning the decision of the District Court, Morang.