SC questions Cabinet expansion

Kathmandu, December 29

The Supreme Court today issued a show-cause notice to the Office of Prime Minister and Council of Ministers seeking clarification over expansion of the Cabinet.

A single bench of Chief Justice Kalyan Shrestha directed the OPMCM to submit a written explanation over the expansion of Cabinet on January 12, according to SC Spokesperson Bishworaj Poudel.

The apex court also set a hearing for January 13 to decide whether or not to issue an interim order against Cabinet expansion.

Advocate Kanchan Krishna Neupane had registered a writ petition at the Supreme Court, saying the expansion of the Council of Ministers was against the spirit of the newly promulgated constitution.

The bench also directed the government to provide basic shelter, food and other essentials to earthquake survivors, who are at increased risk in winter.

Neupane had stated in the petition that Cabinet expansion was against Article 76 (9) of constitution, which sets the maximum number of ministers in the Cabinet at 25, including the Prime Minister. The Article states: “The President at the recommendation of the Prime Minister shall form a Council of Ministries with 25 ministers in full capacity including the Prime Minister as per the principle of proportionality from among the members of the Federal Parliament.”