Main opposition seek time to study, CJ appointment deferred

KATHMANDU: A meeting of the Constitutional Council held for the recommendation of appointment of the Chief Justice ended inconclusively after the main opposition party UML leader sought time to study before making any decision.

Saying no decision was taken in the meeting after the leader of the main opposition party demanded more time for the study, Deputy-Speaker Ganga Prasad Yadav said that the next meeting has been scheduled for tomorrow.

The post of CJ has remained vacant after Chief Justice Sushila Karki got retirement due to age limit on June 7. Senior-most Judge Gopal Parajuli has now been assigned as acting Chief Justice on the basis of seniority.

Article 284 of the constitution has the provision related to Constitutional Council for recommendation of the appointment of Chief Justice and chiefs and office-bearers at Constitutional Bodies.

The Prime Minister is the Chairman, Chief Justice, Speaker and the Deputy-Speaker of House of Representatives, Chairman of National Assembly, leader of the main opposition party in House of Representatives are the members of the Constitutional Council.

There is also the provision that Minister for Law and Justice would be the member of the Constitutional Council while recommending the appointment of Chief Justice at a time when the post of CJ remained vacant.

A meeting of the Constitutional Council held on June 13 had recommended the name of six judges as the next Chief Justice.

The Council had recommended the names of acting CJ, Parajuli and the Judges of Supreme Court, Deepak Raj Joshi, Om Prakash Mishra, Devendra Gopal Shrestha, Cholendra Shumsher JB Rana and Jagadish Sharma Poudel, and had sent the names to the Secretariat of Constitutional Council.

Prime Minister Sher Bahadur Deuba, leader of the main opposition party Oli, Speaker Onsari Gharti, Deputy Speaker Yadav, and Law Minister Gopalman Shrestha were present in the meeting.