Hearing on House dissolution case at SC

Oli, Nembang and Kharel might have a different version of constitution: Senior advocate Thapa

Published On: January 25, 2021 05:14 PM NPT By: Republica  | @RepublicaNepal

KATHMANDU, Jan 25: During Monday's hearing over the writ petitions filed at the Supreme Court, senior advocate Shambhu Thapa satirized Prime Minister KP Sharma Oli, Chairman of Constituent Assembly Subhash Chandra Nembang and Attorney General Agni Prasad Kharel.

Pleading against the dissolution of the 275-member House of Representatives (HoR) from the side of Chief Whip of the ruling Nepal Communist Party (NCP), Dev Prasad Gurung and lawmakers of the dissolved House Krishna Bhakta Pokhrel, Ram Kumari Jhakri and Shashi Shrestha at the Constitutional Bench hearing, senior advocate Thapa satirized the government side saying that they must have a different version of the constitution.

CA Chairman Nembang and Attorney General Kharel, who had earlier made separate statements that the present constitution has not given any prerogative to the prime minister to dissolve the parliament, have been backing Prime Minister KP Sharma Oli’s move of House dissolution on December 20 last year.

Senior advocate Thapa came down heavily upon the government when he was asked how long he would take for pleading at the Chief Justice Cholendra Shumsher JBR-led five-member Constitutional Bench. “I don’t have much to interpret as the constitution does not have the provision of House dissolution by the PM,” said Thapa, adding that other advocates have also made clear explanations on the constitutional provision.

“I have nothing new to say about constitutional provision. I’m wondering whether the Prime Minister, Constituent Assembly Chairman and attorney general have a separate version of the constitution.”

Thapa was of the view that it was not appropriate of them [Nembang and Kharel] to say one thing during constitution promulgation and change tune in the present context.

There is one and only constitution. It should not be interpreted differently, Thapa argued.

Subhash Chandra Nembang, Chairman of the Constituent Assembly that promulgated the constitution in 2015, had said that the present constitution does not give any prerogative to the prime minister to dissolve the parliament to ensure stability. Speaking at a program recently, Nembang, however, made a contradictory statement. He said that the statement made a year ago was in a different context. The context of House dissolution is different this time, Nembang argued.

Agni Kharel, as the incumbent minister for Law, Justice and Parliamentary Affairs, had also said that the prime minister has not been provided any prerogative to dissolve the House. Kharel, however, has been defending PM Oli’s House dissolution move as the Attorney General.

The Constitutional Bench has been conducting hearings on as many as 13 writ petitions demanding the restoration of the House of Representatives.

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