SC continues stay order against protest ban

KATHMANDU: The government has suffered a setback today after the Supreme Court ordered to continue its stay order against government decision to ban protests and demonstrations in key public places in Kathmandu including Maitighar Mandala.

A division bench of Justices Om Prakash Mishra and Kedar Prasad Chalise passed down a verdict to this effect on Monday upon concluding a hearing on the writ filed against the government by Senior Advocate Dinesh Tripathi.

Kathmandu District Administration’s restricted zones order issued on February 20, stated that the order was issued as per Section 6 (3) of the Local Administration Act, 1971 and would remain valid till further notice but any order issued as per this provision of the Act can not remain valid for more than two months at once and therefore, the DAO’s order appeared to be in conflict with the law, the apex court stated.

Earlier on Friday, a division bench of justices Hari Krishna Karki and Dambar Bahadur Shahi had ordered to procure files of the decisions made by Kathmandu District Administration and District Security Committee to ban protests at Maitighar Mandala and other places in Kathmandu.

Tripathi has said the government’s decision to ban protest at Maitighar Mandala had violated citizens’ right to peaceful assembly and freedom of expression.