Kathmandu, August 5

The Supreme Court today issued an interim order and show cause notice to the Commission for the Investigation of Abuse of Authority and Tribhuvan University in response to a writ petition filed by seven doctors working at Tribhuvan University Teaching Hospital.

The writ petitioners had filed a writ of certiorari yesterday at the SC against the CIAA, Tribhuvan University, TU Executive Council and TU Registrar saying the punitive action that the TU administration was going to take against them on account of a letter written by the CIAA was illegal.

A single bench of Justice Anand Mohan Bhattarai issued the order today.

The TU administration had sought clarifications from the petitioners over their role in the recommendation of seats for Gandaki Medical College, according senior advocate Tulasi Bhatta, who represented the petitioners in the court.

The SC said in its order that the two clarifications that the TU administration sought from the petitioners on June 21 and July 31 were not an independent action taken by TU and were the results of a letter written by the CIAA on May 19.

The court said the new constitution, unlike the Interim constitution that had authorised the CIAA to take action on the basis of improper action, had removed the provision of improper action and hence there was a question of legality of section 12(a) of the CIAA Act.

The apex court stayed any punitive action by the TU administration against the petitioners, saying   if action was taken against the petitioners as per the clarification sought by the TU registrar on July 31, which would implement the CIAA’s order, it would adversely impact the professional development of the petitioners.

The court ordered the TU administration to maintain status quo till a final verdict is delivered in the case.

The TU administration had sought clarification from the writ petitioners on July 31 as to why punitive action should not be taken against them. TU administration had sought first clarification from the defendants on June 21.

Prior to that the CIAA had asked the Tribhuvan University administration to take action against the seven doctors for their alleged improper action in the allocation of seats at Gandaki Medical College, said Bhatta.

The writ petitioners, who were members of a monitoring committee, had submitted a report to the dean’s office about the seat allocations of Gandaki Medical College, according to Bhatta.

Bhatta said the petitioners had argued in their petition that the new constitution had already dropped the provision’ improper action’ and hence the CIAA’s decision to invoke Section 12 (a) of the CIAA, Act, 1991 was against the constitution and the TU administration’s actions based on the CIAA’s letter was also illegal.

The petitioners include TUTH doctors Bimal Kumar Sinha and Sharad Raj Onta, among others.