Legal Development in Nepal

UNMIN stresses on impartial law enforcement

Kantipur reports here that UNMIN has stressed on the impartial law enforcement. The news is slightly long and You can read it here:
Ian Martin, chief of United Nations Mission in Nepal (UNMIN), has expressed his view about the ongoing preparations for the Constituent Assembly (CA) polls slated for April 10 and stated his concern to establish impartial law enforcement across the country. He also suggested six high priority areas for the credibility of the CA polls, reiterated UN’s commitment to ‘assist’ the country in creating a favourable environment for the polls and expressed his support for economic and social change for a democratic transition of Nepal.
UNMIN chief Martin in a statement at the Nepal Donor Consultation Meeting at the Ministry of Finance Thursday expressed concern of the international community for the success of the ongoing peace process.

“On each occasion when I go to United Nations Headquarters to report to the Security Council on the progress of Nepal’s peace process and the support to it of the UN, I am reminded what a strong and unanimous consensus there is within the international community wanting to see this peace process succeed,” he said, “It’s not a secret that in some conflict and post-conflict situations the international community itself is divided, but Nepal only has friends, and its friends are united in support of its transition.  The world was deeply impressed with the speed with which a Nepalese peace process, a process not mediated by any third party, moved forward in 2006 to end a ten-year armed conflict: the international community wanted, and wants, to support it to the utmost.”

However, he also stated the reasons for the current conflict in view between the ruling parties, concerns over the impartial enforcement of law across the country and the challenge of transforming an armed movement into a political one.

Martin said, “No peace process has ever moved forward smoothly without setbacks, and it would have been naïve in the extreme to expect that this could be the case in Nepal.  In the discussions which led to the 23-point agreement the parties were frank in acknowledging weaknesses of implementation.  Deadlines set within the process were often unrealistic, and failures to fulfill commitments opened up mistrust between parties.  It has not been easy for a coalition government to take decisions with consensus across seven parties.  A formula has not been found for agreement on re-establishing multiparty local government bodies.”

“It is a major challenge to establish impartial law enforcement across a country which has been torn by conflict.  An armed movement is not instantly transformed into a political party operating according to the norms of a democratic multi-party framework.  And one of the most difficult issues at the end of any armed conflict is how to reach and implement decisions about the future of the combatants,” he added.

“And as if those challenges were not daunting enough, Nepal’s peace process has faced the further challenge of the demand of traditionally marginalised groups that long-standing discrimination should be urgently addressed, and in particular that they must be  fairly represented in the Constituent Assembly which is to shape the future of this highly diverse country, as well as to provide the basis for a government with the broad legitimacy necessary to address the challenges of peace and development,” said Martin stressing the need for the fair inclusion of marginalised groups in the CA polls.

Stressing on the need of social change to go along with political transformation, he said “When these political challenges have presented so many issues requiring short-term management, it is also not easy to maintain the focus on issues of poverty, of service delivery and of long-term development.  These are not UNMIN’s mandate, but they are very much the concern of the UN system as a whole, and I echo all that has been said about the integral relationship between peace and development.  Attention to development is part of the peace process.  A central commitment of the Comprehensive Peace Accord is to adopt a ‘common development concept for economic and social transformation and justice’, as well as to carry out an inclusive democratic and progressive restructuring of the state to address discrimination against marginalized groups.”

He also reiterated UN’s police to only ‘assist’ Nepal in establishing a democratic framework in the country. “The core commitment of the peace process is to provide a democratic framework to address these issues through the election of an inclusive Constituent Assembly, and the core role requested of the United Nations is to ‘assist’ in creating a free, fair climate for that election.  I stress the word ‘assist’, because like everything else in this process success depends on the Nepalese actors themselves, and we are at a critical moment, with the lists of candidates filed yesterday at the same time as important negotiations with Madhesi parties are continuing, and the situation in many parts of the Terai is extremely tense.,” said the UNMIN chief during the meeting.

He also suggested six areas of high priority for the credibility of the upcoming CA polls.

He stressed on the need of a conclusive talks with the agitating Madhesi parties and the need for persuasion of other marginalised groups to go forward with the polls for their concerns to be addressed.

“First, we all hope that the current dialogue with Madhesi parties is successful today or in the very near future, but even if it is, this will by no means be the end of the need for dialogue with marginalized groups, to persuade them despite their reservations that this Constituent Assembly election should go forward and can provide the framework for their concerns to be addressed,” said Martin.

Expressing the dire need for all political parties to respect each other’s election campaigns, he said, “Second, all the parties that are to contest the election should recommit themselves to respect each other’s right to campaign wherever they choose, observing fully this commitment made in successive agreements and required by the Election Code of Conduct.  This can be greatly assisted by independent monitoring, and I urge again the immediate implementation of the commitment to create an independent national monitoring body, which the United Nations will assist with its information.  The government has invited international observers, including the United Nations Electoral Experts Monitoring Team appointed by the Secretary-General: all parties must understand that international observers will speak out against intimidation and irregularities.”

Martin also asked the Seven Party Alliance to work collectively at the national and local level for the management of the peace process. “Third, the Seven-Party Alliance must maintain collective management of the peace process, working together at national and local level, despite the strain which political competition will exert on their cooperation.  They have already formed a High Level Coordination Committee for this purpose, and the Peace Commission is an important further commitment to such collective management.  The formation of new peace process bodies is an opportunity for belated fulfillment of the commitment to include proper representation of women, as well as for a more effective partnership with civil society,” he said.

He pointed out the need for responsible implementation of the commitments to the combatants in the meeting.

Martin said, “Fourth, the commitments in relation to combatants must be implemented responsibly.  The United Nations has long been making preparations to assist with the discharge of minors and others disqualified by UNMIN’s verification:  we urgently need a framework of practical cooperation with the government and the Maoist army for this to be implemented effectively.  It is a fundamental commitment that began with the 12-point Understanding that the two armies must stay out of the electoral process, and UNMIN’s arms monitoring will seek to ensure this.  But those who remain in the cantonments must see that their future is being considered in accordance with the Comprehensive Peace Accord commitments to a special committee for this purpose, recently reconstituted, and to an action plan for democratization of the Nepalese Army.”

Martin said that the fate of the victims of the decade long armed conflict should be publicised.

“Fifth, victims of the armed conflict must not be forgotten amid the electoral preparations, whether they are families whose loved ones were killed or disappeared, or displaced persons whose property should be returned.  I believe that development partners are willing to help fulfill commitments to compensation, but victims require not only compensation but truth about the fate of their loved ones.  And justice for violations of human rights is not only a need of victims, but also of a society which needs to assure future security by ending impunity,’ said the UNMIN chief.

Lastly, martin pointed out the need for public security, not only for the CA polls, but also in the daily lives of the general public.

“Sixth, public security is essential not just for a credible election, but for the people of Nepal to carry on their daily lives and build a better future for themselves and their children.  This requires effective policing, but it is not a task for police alone:  it requires cooperation of all democratic forces at the local level, supporting and not impeding impartial law enforcement as well as promoting service delivery,” he said.

Martin also said that the UN would refrain form assisting a future imposed by undemocratic means and was just ‘assisting’ in the runup to the polls so that it could be conducted in a fair manner. He expressed his support  for the Comprehensive Peace accord and a democratic transition to economic and social change in an inclusive Nepal.

Human Rights issues in Nepal

This news is taken from Nepalnews and you can access it here. The post says that while enacting any law, for example:Truth and Reconciliation Commission, the human rights issue should be the central focus and primary issue on the agenda.

The International Commission of Jurists (ICJ) has urged the Nepal government to ensure that laws related to a Truth and Reconciliation Commission and a Disappearances Commission are adopted through regular democratic legislative processes and are not adopted by ordinance. The ICJ also reiterated that adoption of such legislation should follow broad based national consultation and should meet Nepal’s human rights obligations.

“In a democratic country, legislation of national importance should only be adopted following public debate, including by the country’s legislature”, said the ICJ in a release issued on Wednesday.

“The introduction of laws related to a Truth and Reconciliation Commission and a Disappearances Commission via ordinance violates Nepal’s Supreme Court directives and the Interim Parliament’s instructions.”

While the ICJ welcomed steps taken by the government to begin consultation with civil society, including victims, it however expressed concern that “the consultation process has been insufficient in several areas including: the range and depth of issues discussed, the broadness of participation in the consultations, and the number and the geographical location of consultations.”

“To ensure national legitimacy legislation establishing transitional justice mechanisms requires broad based national consultation with all stake holders, particularly victims of the conflict and their families, during the drafting process”, the ICJ said, adding, “To combat the culture of impunity in Nepal it will be essential that the legislation addresses past gross violation of international human rights and humanitarian law including crimes against humanity and that the Commission has the necessary powers to recommend that Nepal’s criminal justice system bring the perpetrators identified by the Commissions to justice.”

On the same point, Kiran Chapagain, famous for reporting legal issues, writes in Kantipur that Truth and Reconciliation Commission Bill is being enacted soon. You can read the news here in Kantipur.

The government is making preparations to introduce through ordinance an anti-disappearance law and a commission on disappearances, something not desired by national and international human rights organizations.According to a highly-placed government source, a draft prepared by the Home Ministry after the December 7, 2007 agreement among the seven parties was recently sent to the Ministry of Peace and Reconstruction and the Ministry of Law, Justice and Parliamentary Affairs for their reactions.

A draft of the ordinance obtained by the Post proposes a five-member commission on enforced disappearances but does not treat the act of disappearance as a crime. This means that the proposed draft ordinance does not fully comply with the June 1, 2007 Supreme Court ruling.

In a landmark verdict then on enforced disappearances, the apex court had issued strictures to the government requiring an act of disappearance to be

treated as a crime under any proposed anti-disappearance law.

“If such a law emphasizes only the investigation and does not treat the act of disappearance as a crime, it is useless,” said advocate Govinda Bandi, a member of the Detainee Probe Committee which was formed by the Supreme Court and which had helped the court to pass the June 1 verdict.

This is the fourth time the government has prepared the draft of an anti-disappearance law. Earlier efforts aborted after vehement criticism from both national and international human rights organizations.

The present move also has evoked concern at international human rights organizations like the International Commission of Jurists (ICJ), an organization working for justice and human rights.

In a statement issued from Geneva, ICJ urged the government Wednesday not to introduce through ordinance any law relating to a Disappearance Commission or a Truth and Reconciliation Commission.

“…a Truth and Reconciliation Commission and a Disappearances Commission are adopted through regular democratic legislative processes and are not adopted by ordinance,” ICJ said in the statement.

Besides, it has suggested the government adopt such legislation following broad-based national consultations and after meeting Nepal’s rights obligations.

ICJ further added that introduction of such laws via ordinance violates the Supreme Court’s directives and the Interim Parliament’s instructions.

The parliament, a couple of months ago, instructed Home Minister Krishna Sitoula to introduce the legislation only after holding extensive consultations.

When asked to comment on the government’s latest move to introduce anti-disappearance law, a senior Home Ministry official who preferred anonymity simply said, “We prepared the ordinance as per the agreement of the seven parties.”

Governor’s case decision deferred, yet again

In this Blog, We are constantly updating any development that takes place about this case-the corruption case against NRB Governor Bijayanath Bhattarai. You can see here for earlier developments. Nepalnews here reports the latest development on this case.

The Special Court, on Friday, repeated the scene seen seven times before.

It deferred the decision on the case against governor of Nepal Rastra Bank (NRB) Bijaya Nath Bhattarai citing lack of time.

The case of suspended governor of the central bank has been deferred till Sunday (February 17).

Bhattarai and a director of Nepal Rastra Bank (NRB) Surendra Pradhan are facing charges of irregularities worth nearly Rs 20 million in a financial sector reform programme.

The Commission for Investigation of Abuse of Authority (CIAA) had slapped the charges against the duo seven months ago.

The donors have expressed concern over the lingering and delay in the settlement of the case against the governor of the central bank.

Constituent Assembly Court Established

Nepalnews reports here that CA Court has been established. In our earlier post, we had told you that CA Court will be headed by Hon’ble justice Anup Raj Sharma of Supreme Court of Nepal.

The cabinet, on Sunday, has formed the Constitutional Court to hear disputes and complaints regarding the election.

The cabinet formed the court as per the recommendation by the Judicial Council.

Anup Raj Sharma, a Supreme Court judge will head the court. The court will include two members – Tapa Bahadur Magar and Ram Kumar Prasad Shah – both of whom are judges at the apex court.

Nahakul Subedi, co-registrar at the Council, has been appointed as registrar at the Constitutional Court.

The Constitutional Court has been formed as per the special act passed by the parliament.

Another small news is here from Kantipur which reports that lawyers’ meet has adopted 13 points declaration in a national conference.

Some five hundred lawyers, who had gathered here for a three-day national conference that concluded on Sunday, unanimously decided to be active and committed to ensuring that the April 10 election to a Constituent Assembly (CA) is held in an impartial and fearless manner.

Similarly, the conference adopted a 13-point declaration, mandating Nepal Bar Association (NBA) to advocate constitutionalism, judicial independence, fundamental rights, pluralism, and periodic and competitive election after the CA election.

The conference also recommended that the demands of Madhes and Janajatis be resolved through talks, besides mandating NBA to play a role in mediating between the government and agitating groups.

The lawyers also expressed concern over hindrances to enjoyment of press freedom while urging the concerned parties not to interfere with independence of media.

The commitments expressed in the comprehensive peace accord should be respected by all concerned parties, the conference said in its declaration. Similarly, the conference suggested that all agreements between the government and agitating groups should be implemented completely.

Likewise, lawyers also decided to ask armed groups in the tarai to stop violence, terror and extortion.

Speaking at the concluding session of the conference, NBA President Bishwa Kant Mainali said that the April-10 election should not be postponed under the pretext of security. “Elections have been held even in countries worst hit by conflicts,” Mainali said.

Corruption Case of NRB Governor

In this post, in our earlier blog post, We had written that we will be updating you with the recent development on this case- case related to Governor Bijaya Nath Bhattarai as this case assumes a great significance among public. Here is a report published in Kantipur about the authenticity of letters presented by CIAA. If this is true, I think, the case is weak one and seems to tilt in favour of the accused.

KPMG official was never in Nepal for RB deal

KPMG, a Sri Lanka-based consulting firm dragged into the corruption case against Nepal Rastra Bank Governor, has finally replied to the Special Court, saying that it did not authorize A.N. Fernando to sign a consulting agreement with the central bank on February 6, 2006.Fernando is currently at the center of the controversy that has surrounded the case after the court raised doubts about the authenticity of the agreement bearing his signature. The court has not been able to finalize the case against Governor Bijaya Nath Bhattarai because of the questionable nature of the document.

“Mr. A. N. Fernando who was supposed to have signed said agreement with the Central Bank of Nepal on behalf of our firm has never been to Nepal and the signature appearing on page 3 of the agreement sent by you is not his signature,” KPMG said in a reply sent to the court on Monday.

KPMG was replying to a court letter sent on January 16. The court has asked the firm to clarify the authenticity of the document.

The question of the authenticity of the document arose after lawyers for Governor Bhattarai doubted the authenticity of a letter dated June 18, 2007. In the letter sent to Ranjan Krishna Aryal, investigation officer of the Commission for the Investigation of Abuse of Authority (CIAA), KPMG said the signature appearing on the agreement was not Fernando’s.

Like the lawyers for the CIAA and those for the Governor, the judges of the court have also remained divided over the documents. Chairman of the court Bhoop Dhoj Adhikari has maintained that there was no need to verify the authenticity of the documents to pass a verdict in the case. However, two other members of the courts, Komal Nath Sharma and Cholendra SJB Rana, have been seeking to verify the authenticity of the documents. As the members are in a majority, their stance is prevailing.

The court is holding yet another hearing in the case on February 15.

CJ stresses on media-judiciary interaction

This Blog post contains some of the recent legal news about Nepalese Law and its development. The first post is about the views expressed by Chief Justice of Nepal Supreme Court where he expressed his views that there should be more interaction between Judiciary and Media. This is indeed a welcome step on the light of some of the media publications in Nepal highlighting corruption in Judiciary. The Right to information of Nepalese people entitle every nepali citizen to know what is state doing including judiciary. Since right to information is part of right of freedom of speech and expression enshrined in our constitution, the steps that judiciary is taking must uphold the letters and spirits of constitution.

The News was published in Nepalnews and can be read here:

Chief Justice Kedar Prasad Giri has said Supreme Court would soon initiate projects to improve the relation between judiciary and media so as the deliver right information about decisions in court to the general people.

Addressing the inaugural session of reporting training on legal issues organised by Freedom Forum in the capital Wednesday, Giri said that regular interaction between media and judiciary was essential for promoting human rights and civil liberties in the transitional phase.

Former attorney general Badri Bahadur Karki said journalists writing news on legal issues have to be more responsible in disseminating correct information, adding that court reporting in Nepal has been minimal.

Former president of Nepal Bar Association Shambhu Thapa said the journalists must distinguish between legal and judicial aspects of the any verdicts given by the court while writing news.
Senior journalist Harihar Birahi, Gokul Pokhrel, president of Press Chautari Bal Krishna Chapagain, chairman of Freedom Forum Tara Nath Dahal highlighted the importance of court reporting in Nepal and necessity for improving the relation between media and judiciary.

There is one more news published in Kantipur about modernisation of Nepalese Judiciary.

You can read the news here:

SC gives more power to judges, legalizes IT use

A meeting of the Full Court, the apex policy making body of the judiciary, on Tuesday approved more power to chief judges of the appellate courts besides legalizing correspondence via the Internet for judicial purpose.The meeting took the decision to this effect by amending the existing Supreme Court and Appellate Court Regulations, according to Supreme Court Spokesperson Til Prasad Shrestha.

The meeting decided to give more power to the chief judges of the appellate courts so as to make the administration of justice more effective in the district courts under their respective jurisdiction.

Now the chief judges can regularly monitor, inspect and instruct the district courts under their respective jurisdiction, making the chief judges active and dynamic in their respective regions.

The amendments were introduced in view of the fact that the chief judges have been more dependent on the Supreme Court even for giving direction and monitoring and inspecting performance of the lower courts under their jurisdiction.

In the meantime, the Full Court also decided to include provisions in the Regulations, legalizing correspondence via the Internet for judicial purpose. Earlier, only correspondence via fax and post offices were considered authentic for judicial purpose.

Similarly, the Full Court also decided to give power to Chief Justice to designate judges for the proposed six commercial benches. Preparations are underway to establish commercial benches, Shrestha said.

Tarai turmoil taxing judiciary

 

Here is a report of Kiran Chapagain from Kantipur where he writes how terai violence has affected the judiciary.

The ongoing political turmoil in the eastern Tarai has started to take a toll on the judiciary, obstructing and delaying court work.Judges and officials at courts of law in the most-affected Tarai districts – Bara, Parsa,

Rautahut, Saptari, Siraha, Dhanusha, Sarlahi and Mahottari — said that the conflict has badly affected court-related field work like mapping, serving of subpoenas, implementing verdicts and carrying out investigations.When contacted by the Post to inquire how courts have been impacted by the conflict in the

southern plains, some judges and courts officials said they are encountering difficulties dispensing justice independently as they face frequent threats by litigants acting under cover of the armed Tarai groups.”We have not been able to send hill-origin court staff into the field,” said Krishna Subedi,

chief administrator at Saptari District Court, “As a result, we have not been able to do judicial work on time.”The courts have now begun to rely solely on Madhesi staff for field work, according to

Subedi.However, it is risky even for Madhesi staff to be out alone in the field, says Surya Bahadur

Thapa, chief administrator at Dhanusha District Court. “So we send them out in a team. The team finishes its work at one place and moves on to another.”This, according to Thapa, is not an efficient way of doing things since it causes delay.

A judge from one of the districts said, on condition of anonymity, that the court has not

been able to implement its verdicts for the last three months as none of its staff is ready to go out into the field.The rising threats against hill-origin staff in the Tarai has left many courts severely under

-staffed. Siraha District Court has only 20 staffer as 32 others have gone on deputation in view of the prevailing insecurity.The absence of VDC secretaries from their respective postings, following the killings and

abduction of colleagues by armed groups, has also affected judicial work.”When tamiladars visit the villages to serve subpoenas they hardly ever find the VDC

secretary and this has affected court work,” said Balendra Rupakheti, judge at Mahottari District Court. The VDC secretary certifies that subpoenas have been served on the persons concerned. The presence of a VDC secretary is legally mandatory when a tamildar serves a subpoena.As law and order in the Tarai continues to deteriorate, Nepal Bar Association (NBA) on

Januray 25 submitted a memorandum to Chief Justice Kedar Prasad Giri drawing his attention to the problem.In an 11-point memorandum to the Chief Justice, NBA demanded that the situation at the

courts in the Tarai be taken seriously and arrangements made to ensure their smooth functioning.

Govt preparing to come up with toothless TRC

[Till Today, I was just copying some of the legal news from here and there, and was posting them here. From Today, I have tried to manage them in a good order and with Clear Source and if possible, with Author’s Name. I will be discussing some of the legal, social and economical implications of these developments and news in my blog as comment from my side.]

This is a News Report taken from Nepalnews. For Original post, You can Click here. I have copied it below.

Even before forming the Truth and Reconciliation Commission (TRC) and a Commission to probe Disappeared persons, the government has inserted provisions in the respective draft acts, thereby effectively making them toothless, says a report.

Nepal Samacharpatra daily reports that the Peace and Reconstruction Ministry has given final touches to these draft acts, which could be introduced as an ordinance since the parliament is not sitting currently.

The daily adds that since responsible political leaders, high-level officials, and army officials could be implicated for war crimes and crimes related with forced disappearances, the Ministry has inserted provisions to provide them with amnesty.

A senior official at the Ministry, however, said that the government wanted to promote reconciliation. “The respective commissions themselves will probe who is guilty and who is not,” said Shyam Sundar Sharma, spokesperson of the Ministry.

On the other hand, rights activist Dr. Gopal Krishna Shiwakoti smells a rat in the whole process. He questions the intention of introducing such important legislations in the form of ordinance. This, he said, could further the culture of impunity.

Verdict on suspended central bank governor’s case

This Blog will be constantly tracking the news related to corruption case of Nepal Rastra Bank (NRB) governor Bijay Nath Bhattarai. The case has been deferred again and verdict is unlikely to be out any time soon if this is the way courts move on. There seems to be incompetency on the part of Investigating Authority to collect all the evidence with proper caution. We would like to see that the case is decided soon and if the accused is found guilty, a maximum punishment as per nepalese law be imposed on him. This should send clear message to the corrupt officials in our country that corruption is no more tolerated. For this to happen, the investigations must be complete on all fronts and the designated court must decide it soon. Justice delayed is of course, justice denied. You can read some of the developments in near and distant past on this case in this post.
Here is a Report from Kantipur that the case is deferred again.
The much-awaited verdict on the corruption case filed against the suspended Nepal Rastra Bank (NRB) governor Bijay Nath Bhattarai was deferred for the sixth time on Monday.At the end of the office hour today, the Special Court stated that it could not give the verdict due to time constraint and added that the case will resume on February 15.On January 13, the court had put off the verdict for the fifth consecutive time, citing lack of evidence after the central bank failed to furnish proof relating to the authenticity of a letter from Sri Lanka-based consulting firm KPMG in a corruption case against suspended Governor Bhattarai and another NRB official, Surendra Man Pradhan.

According to sources, the court has not been able to give its verdict on the case since the NRB is yet to provide proof relating to the letter’s authenticity.

Bhattarai, along with Pradhan, are facing a corruption charge filed by the Commission for Investigation of Abuse of Authority (CIAA), the constitutional anti-graft body, on June 29 last year.

CIAA has accused Bhattarai and Pradhan of causing a loss amounting Rs 24.5 million to the public by not claiming compensations after terminating a consulting agreement unilaterally.

Division bench of judges Cholendra SJB Rana and Komal Nath Sharma are carrying out the hearing.

Before Above News was out, We had published that the case will be decided on January 28. Our Previous Report was taken from Kantipur whose exact link could not be found now. The Report was:

    The Special Court Monday is due to give much-awaited verdict on the corruption case filed against the suspended Nepal Rastra Bank (NRB) governor Bijay Nath Bhattarai.The court had earlier deferred the hearing on the Central Bank governor for the fifth consecutive time citing different reasons.

The court had put off the verdict on 13 January for today citing reasons of lack of evidence after the central bank failed to furnish proof relating to the authenticity of a letter from Sri Lanka-based consulting firm KPMG in a corruption case against suspended Governor Bhattarai and another NRB official, Surendra Man Pradhan.

Bhattarai, along with Pradhan, are facing a corruption charge filed by the Commission for Investigation of Abuse of Authority (CIAA), the constitutional anti-graft body, on June 29 last year.

CIAA has accused Bhattarai and Pradhan of causing a loss amounting Rs 24.5 million to the public by not claiming compensations after terminating a consulting agreement unilaterally.

Division bench of judges Cholendra SJB Rana and Komal Nath Sharma are carrying out the hearing.

Some other Reports related to this case can be read in following Links:
Court gets Lanka firm papers : twist in case of RBB Governor

NRB guv case verdict rescheduled for Feb 15

Tale of Two News

This post contains two news that were out on the same day. The first report is about the call for strengthening justice mechanism in Nepal and the second one is about a verdict handed out by Supreme Court of Nepal under Nepalese Trust Act. The exact location of the news on the web could not be located now. Both the reports are taken from Kantipur.

NBA tells CJ to iron out justice system

The office bearers of the Nepal Bar Association Friday called on Chief Justice Kedar Prasad Giri urging him not to issue any contradictory orders and to speed-up the case hearing process.A few days back, NBA representatives, expressing dissatisfaction over the justice system and activities like “hooliganism” inside the court premises, submitted an 11-point suggestion to the chief justice to give transparent verdicts in a swift manner.

On January 17, a group of people shouted slogans against the judges and tried to vandalise a Supreme Court bench while it was conducting a hearing on a case on Thursday.

Stating that a writ petition of the same subject has been treated with bias, the NBA representatives also suggested introducing a basic format while issuing interim orders and preemptive orders.

SC bans transactions in Rajguthi land

The Supreme Court (SC) on Thursday put an end to transactions in Rajguthi land owned by the government trust known as Guthi Sansthan.In a ruling to the government, the Supreme Court said such a move was necessary to preserve Rajguthi lands, which are decreasing day by day.Generally, guthi land cannot be bought or sold. However, Rajguthi land can be bought or sold after it is converted into Raitan Numberi – land on which tax is paid by the tenant to the Guthi Sansthan.

The provisions in the Guthi Sansthan Act 1976 allowing the conversion of Rajguthi land into Raitan Numberi have been ruled null and void by the bench comprising Justices Ram Prasad Shrestha, Bal Ram KC and Damodar Prasad Sharma as these provisions violated people’s cultural and religious rights guaranteed by the Interim Constitution.

The bench issued the ruling in response to public interest litigation filed by Pro Public, an NGO. The litigation mentioned that the existing legal provisions had allowed rampant misuse of Rajguthi land and caused massive decrease in such lands.

The court also ordered the government to stop the practice of exchanging private Guthi land with other lands. At present, the practice of exchanging expensive Guthi land with less valuable land is prevalent. Consequently, expensive land owned by private Guthis is decreasing, according to the litigants.

Land owned by private Guthis is being misused in other ways as well. According to the litigation, Guthi land is being sold after creating a bank fund equivalent to the minimum price of the land. The court also ruled this practice illegal on Thursday.

The apex court also ordered the government to implement the recommendations of the Guthi Commission led by senior advocate Basanta Ram Bhandari. The commission had recommended to the government a number of ways to check irregularities in connection with Guthi land but none of them have been implemented yet.