KATHMANDU, Jan 30: The Supreme Court (SC) has asked the government to submit a progress report on the implementation of an order it issued a year ago concerning land encroachment at Fewa lake in Pokhara. The apex court move has come in response to a contempt to court petition filed on August 30, 2018 by advocate Khagendra Subedi, accusing the government of not heeding the court .
In its ruling, the SC had directed the government to take necessary measures to rid the lake area of encroachments.
Nine high-ranking officials including Prime Minister KP Sharma Oli, Chief Minister of Gandaki Province Prithivi Subba Gurung and Chief Secretary Lok Darshan Regmi have been named as defendants in the petition filed on August 30.
Stating that no steps had been taken pursuant to the court order, the plaintiff has demanded one year jail terms and Rs 10,000 fines for the officials concerned .
A joint bench of Justices Prakashman Singh Raut and Prakash Dhungana has now told the government to submit a detailed report on progress in implementing the court order. First hearings on the contempt plea were held by Chief Justice Cholendra Shamsher Rana.
As per a report of the Fewa encroachment probe committee led by Bishwa Prakash Lamichhane, a former chairman of the urban development committee in Pokhara, 86 hectors of land around Fewa lake was encroached by private parties. The report prepared in 2012 listed the names of over 1,000 individuals accused of encroachment .
On April, 29, 2018, a division bench of Justices Om Prakash Mirsha and Sapana Malla Pradhan ordered the government to annul the registration of Fewa area lands implicated by the Lamichhane committee. The bench had also ordered removal of structures that had been built illegally on the land.