NBA opposes Supreme Court Regulations

Kathmandu, June 1

The Nepal Bar Association today wrote a letter to Chief Justice Sushila Karki, saying the draft of the Supreme Court Regulation, 2017 was against the provisions of the constitution, laws and established practices.

The lawyers’ umbrella body said that the draft regulation was also against the Nepal Bar Council Act and against the interests of service seekers.

The NBA has demanded that it be given 15 days to hold comprehensive discussions over the draft regulation and send its comments. The SC has given the NBA till tomorrow to send its comments on the draft regulation. The NBA also formed a 14 member committee to make recommendation on the draft regulation.

NBA General Secretary Khamma Bahadur Khati said the draft regulations stated that a party to a case can appoint only one lawyer and if the party seeks to appoint more than one lawyer, it could do so only with the permission of the court.

According to Khati, the draft regulation also proposes that if somebody files a public interest litigation without valid reasons for the same, the party will be discouraged from bringing same types of case in future and the party will also have to pay compensation to other party to the case for any loss due to filing of ‘a wrong PIL.’

Khati said the new draft proposed to give powers to the registrar of the SC to punish lawyers who, after submitting to the court their clients’ authorisation letter to represent them in a case, do not attend the hearing.

“How can the registrar of the SC punish private law practitioners for not attending a hearing? Lawyers sometimes do not attend cases due to non-payment of fees by the clients,” he said. Draft regulation also proposes that the court will assume that the litigants know of the time to file appeal or other remedial measures against a verdict if the litigants’ lawyers attend the final hearing.  “This should not be the case,” Khati added.

The Supreme Court is a court and hence it should set high standards of rule.  But here the SC appears to be spoiling the standard rules, Khati said.

The committee formed under NBA President Sher Bahadur KC to make recommendation on the Supreme Court Regulation includes  lawyers  Shyam Prasad Kharel,  Harihar Dahal, Badri Bahadur Karki, Shambhu Thapa, Borna Bahadur Karki, Sabita Bhandari (Baral), Purnaman Shakya, Shailendra Kumar Dahal, Surendra Kumar Mahto, Tikaram Bhattarai, Sunil Kumar Pokharel, Govinda Sharma Bandi, and Bijay Prasad Mishra as members. NBA General Secretary Khamma Bahadur Khati will serve as member secretary of the committee.