Petition filed to test authenticity of notice in Nepal Gazette regarding HoR dissolution

KATHMANDU: A petition has been filed at the Supreme Court to verify the authenticity of notice published in Nepal Gazette regarding the dissolution of House of Representatives, on Sunday.

Leaders belonging to the Dahal-Nepal faction of Nepal Communist Party (NCP) -- Krishna Bhakta Pokharel, Shashi Shrestha, Rajkumari Jhankri, among others -- filed the application at the constitutional bench presently hearing the case at the apex court.

The Office of the Attorney General on Friday submitted the copy of Nepal Gazette that has printed the notification about HoR dissolution. The notification was posted on the website of the Department of Printing on Thursday.

Information Officer at the Department, Padma Raj Pathak, said, “Often the rule is that a decision taken by the government does not take effect unless it is published in the gazette, but sometimes the government’s decision takes effect even before it is published there.” It was not unusual for the government to send the government’s decision for printing in the Nepal Gazette after the work has already been completed.

Constitutional bench of Supreme Court had asked the Office of the Attorney General to produce the Nepal Gazette to see whether or not the presidential order on dissolution of HoR was published in it, on Thursday, January 21.

Earlier, advocates Tikaram Bhattarai and Om Prakash Aryal -- who argued on behalf of the petitioners challenging the dismantling of the House -- had pleaded before the constitutional bench saying that the dissolution order issued by the President’s Office was illegal as it was not published in the Nepal Gazette.

Bhattarai said Prime Minister KP Sharma Oli’s decision to dissolve the House of Representatives on December 20 was unconstitutional and that President Bidya Devi Bhandari had erred by endorsing it swiftly.