SC refutes meeting between Prime Minister Oli and SC justices assigned to constitutional bench

Published On: January 15, 2021 08:16 PM NPT By: Republica  | @RepublicaNepal

KATHMANDU, Jan 15: Supreme Court (SC) has refuted news reports published in a section of media about the meeting between Prime Minister K P Oli and the SC justices assigned to the Constitutional Bench that is entrusted with the responsibility to decide the fate of the dissolved parliament.

Issuing a press statement on Friday, the apex court termed the news reports ‘misleading’, ‘untrue’, and ‘fictitious’ and warned that such news could adversely affect the integrity of the judiciary and people’s trust toward the court. While stating that the dissemination of such news is 'unfortunate' and 'regrettable', the apex court has also asked all not to be misled by the news.

The top court has reminded that dissemination of news on any sub judice case without verifying facts and reality could not only erode people’s trust toward the judiciary but also raise questions about the credibility of the media itself.

The statement issued by Deputy Spokesperson at the SC Devendra Dhakal also said that these kinds of acts not only go against the journalists’ code of ethics but also the existing laws. The apex court has also warned that such acts could also fall under the jurisdiction of laws.

A section of online media earlier on Friday reported that Prime Minister Oli had held secret meetings with Justices Sapana Pradhan Malla, Dipak Karki, Mira Khadka, and Hari Krishna Karki on January 10 and 11. Justice Karki has already recused himself from the Constitutional Bench as he has already served as the Attorney General during the PM Oli-led government.

Earlier on Friday itself, former lawmaker Shashi Shrestha, who is one of the writ petitioners challenging the dissolution of the parliament, had said that the reported meeting between Prime Minister Oli and Justices assigned to the constitutional bench, which is entrusted with the responsibility of deciding the fate of House dissolution, is objectionable. While arguing that this is against the principle of separation of powers, Shrestha also said that the meeting of justices with the prime minister at a time when the case is sub judice raises serious questions about the integrity of the judiciary and judicial process.  

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