December 28, 2016 01:10 AM NPT
KATHMANDU, Dec 28: Nepal Bar Association has named senior advocates Bipulendra Chakrawarti, Sushil Panta and Prem Bahadur Khadka for amicus curiae called by the Supreme Court to help it decide whether or not the elections for local bodies could be held under the existing setup.
Likewise, the Supreme Court chapter of the Nepal Bar Association has named senior advocates Purna Man Shakya and Bishwakanta Mainali as well as advocate Shailendra Kumar Dahal for amicus curiae.
A division bench of Justices Cholendra SJB Rana and Hari Krishna Karki last week had asked Nepal Bar Association and Supreme Court Bar chapter to send three advocates each to help the court decide the issue.
The bench had stated that a serious constitutional question has arisen as to whether the election of local bodies can be held in line with Article 303 of the Constitution or not.
Although Clause 2 of Article 303 states that the election of officials of local bodies under the existing setup shall be held in accordance with the law, Clause 1 of the same Article states that the local bodies existing at the time of commencement of the Constitution shall continue to exist until the determination of the number and areas of the local bodies under the federal setup.
Citing this transitional provision, Advocates Chandra Kanta Gyawali, Leeladhar Upadhyay and four others moved the apex court demanding a mandamus order for holding the election of the local bodies, which are without people's representatives since a decade and a half, under the existing setup.
However, some experts claim that the current setup for local bodies will exist only until the commission formed to determine the number and boundaries of local level units submits its report to the government and that the election should be held under the new setup in line with Article 215 of the Constitution.