NUP Must Respect the Rule of Law

Published On: May 18, 2023 07:46 AM NPT By: Republica  | @RepublicaNepal

The latest developments surrounding Resham Chaudhary and his political party, the Nagrik Unmukti Party (NUP), have exposed a clear contradiction between their statements and actions. Chaudhary, currently serving a life term for his involvement in the heinous 'Tikapur massacre,' claims to accept the verdict of the Supreme Court but his party is protesting against it. This double standard is not only concerning but also undermines the rule of law in Nepal. Chaudhary's public statement acknowledges the Supreme Court's decision, albeit with reservations. He asserts that although he may not find the verdict fair, there is no option but to accept it. He acknowledges the importance of respecting the apex court's decision and urges against the random dissemination of the Tikapur incident verdict on social media. However, these statements seem to be at odds with the actions of the NUP.

The NUP, led by Chaudhary's wife, Ranjeeta Shrestha, who also holds a ministerial position in the current government, has announced a Nepal bandh (general shutdown) for five days starting May 20. The party claims that this protest aims to challenge the Supreme Court's decision against Chaudhary. The demand for his unconditional release and the submission of a bill for the amendment of the law clearly contradict the court's verdict. It is crucial to recognize that Chaudhary has been found guilty by all three levels of the court of law, including the Supreme Court. The apex court's recent decision upholding the High Court's conviction solidifies Chaudhary's guilt in orchestrating the Tikapur massacre, which claimed the lives of seven policemen and one minor, including a Senior Superintendent of Police.

Attempting to exert pressure on the government to release Chaudhary from jail through a nationwide strike is not only in direct opposition to his claim of accepting the court's decision but also an illegal and unlawful act by the NUP. The government cannot go against the Supreme Court's verdict, which explicitly states that Chaudhary must complete the remainder of his life sentence. Any attempt to subvert this decision would be a clear violation of the law.

The actions of Chaudhary and the NUP suggest a blatant disregard for the rule of law. While Chaudhary asserts his acceptance of the court's decision, his party is actively working to undermine it. This contradiction undermines the credibility of Chaudhary's claim and raises questions about his true intentions. It is essential for Chaudhary and the NUP to walk the talk and demonstrate respect for the rule of law in the country. Accepting the court's decision entails refraining from instigating protests and strikes that seek to pressure the government into releasing Chaudhary. Instead, they should focus on pursuing legal avenues for review or redress if they believe there are grounds for reconsideration.

The government, on its part, must stand firm in upholding the Supreme Court's decision and not yield to any unlawful pressure. It is the government's duty to ensure that justice is served and to maintain the integrity of the judicial system. Succumbing to the demands of Chaudhary and the NUP would set a dangerous precedent that undermines the judiciary's authority and erodes public trust in the rule of law.

Clearly, the contradictory actions of Chaudhary and the NUP regarding the Tikapur massacre case raise concerns about their commitment to the rule of law. It is imperative for Chaudhary and the NUP to align their words and actions, demonstrating a genuine respect for the rule of law. Upholding the Supreme Court's decision and allowing the legal process to run its course is not only essential for justice to prevail but also crucial for maintaining the integrity of Nepal's judicial system.

At last, we hope that Chaudhary and the NUP will reconsider their stance, prioritize the rule of law, and work within the legal framework to address any concerns they may have. Only by upholding the principles of justice and respecting the decisions of the courts can Nepal progress towards a society that truly values and upholds the rule of law.

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