SC order puts impeachment motion on halt, CJ Karki resuming office

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KATHMANDU – The Supreme Court on Friday issued an interim order instructing the parliament to not move the impeachment motion against Chief Justice Sushila Karki forward. A single bench of Justice Cholendra Shumsher Jung Bahadur Rana had asked to not immediately implement a suspension of CJ Karki as per the parliament’s letter and instructed her to return to duty from Friday itself.

Advocates Sunil Ranjan Singh and Kanjan Krishna Nuepane on Wednesday registered the petition arguing that the motion has been registered citing the case of IGP appointment even as the writ petition filed by DIG Nawa Raj Silwal was sub judice.

Article 105 of the constitution about restriction on discussion states:

‘No discussion shall be held in either House of the Federal Parliament on any matters that may cause adverse effect on the dispensation of justice on any cases which are sub judice in any courts of Nepal and on any judicial acts done by Judges in the course of performance of their duties. Provided that nothing in this Article shall be deemed to bar the expression of opinions about the conduct of a Judge during deliberations held on a motion of impeachment.’

Justice Cholendra Shumsher is in line to be Chief Justice for three years after Gopal Parajuli who will succeed Karki. He will get to serve for over three years and his term will be one of the longest in the history of Nepali judicial history.

Lawmakers of Nepali Congress (NC) and CPN (Maoist Center) on April 30 had registered the impeachment motion as per the Article 101 (2) of the constitution accusing CJ Karki of infringing on executive authority, manipulating performance evaluation of contenders while delivering the verdict in writ petitions against IGP appointment, keeping only a handful of justices in bench against judicial impartiality, violating laws about working procedures, among others.