KATHMANDU, Jan 3: Parliamentarian-elect Resham Chaudhary from Rastriya Janata Party-Nepal (RJP-N), has taken an oath of office and secrecy almost 13 months after his election to the House of Representatives.
Speaker Krishna Bahadur Mahara administered an oath of office and secrecy to Chaudhary amid a ceremony at the parliament’s secretariat in Singha Durbar on Thursday.
The oath taking ceremony had been postponed to 3:00 pm from 11:30 am as the Dilli Bazaar Prison was yet to receive a letter of Chaudhary's release.
Meanwhile, main opposition Nepali Congress has objected to the oath-taking ceremony of Chaudhary saying that it has made a mockery of the state's law while his case is still sub-judice in the court.
“A lawmaker serving jail-term under the charge of moral degradation cannot take an oath of office and secrecy in line with the Rule 244 (3) of the House of Parliamentary Rules,” said Bishwo Prakash Sharma, spokesperson for the Nepali Congress.
Despite taking the oath, Chaudhary will still remain in prison and won't be able to participate in parliamentary meetings.
Chaudhary was the accused main mastermind in the Tikapur incident that occurred on August 24, 2015. In the incident, seven security personnel including SSP Laxman Neupane and a two-year-old had lost their lives in a clash between Tharuhat agitators and security personnel.
Chaudhary was featured in the most wanted list of Nepal Police. He had presented himself at Kailali District Court on February 27, 2018, refuting the charges leveled against him.
Chaudhary's oath comes 10 days after Prime Minister KP Sharma Oli sought a week's time to address Rastriya Janata Party-Nepal's demands. Oli had met with RJP-N leaders at the Prime Minister's Residence on December 25, 2018.
Then, RJP-N had threatened to withdraw support from the government if its demands - constitution amendment and swearing-in of jailed lawmaker Resham Chaudhary and withdrawal of court cases and release of prisoners - were not met.
Chaudhary had been elected to the HoR through the first past the post system from Kailali-1 in the parliamentary elections held on December 7, 2017.