Urgent reform must in judiciary: PM

Kathmandu, September 1:

Prime Minister Pushpa Kamal Dahal ‘Prachanda’ today told representatives of the Nepal Bar Association that he wanted to see a changed judiciary in the changed political context.

“There is a need to move the judiciary in a new manner,” NBA general secretary Raman Kumar Shrestha quoted the PM as saying. He told the lawyers that there was an urgent need to reform the judiciary.

The Prime Minister was talking to the lawyers, who asked him to allocate more budget so that the judiciary would not need to seek funds from NGOs and INGOs. They were of the view that this would discourage corruption in the judiciary.

The NBA representatives led by vice president Hari Prasad Upreti, general secretary Shrestha, treasurer Sabita Bhandari Baral and members Bhabi Gurung, Neeta Gautam Dixit, Kabita Thapa, Nara Bahadur Shahi, Shanti Khanal, Bal Krishna Dhakal, Raj Kishor Yadav and Sanubhai Shakya were present in the meeting with the PM.

The lawyers told the PM that the judiciary had become corrupt due to the investment by NGOs and INGOs and there was a need to stop such funding without the approval from the Ministry of Finance. The Prime Minister also added that the government would consider the proposal to increase the budget for the judiciary.

The same group of lawyers also met with Minister for Law Justice and Constituent Assembly Dev Bahadur Gurung and put forward the same demand — raise budget for the judiciary.

The lawyers also demanded the minister to appoint 50 per cent judges from the lawyers and the rest from the judicial staff.

During the meeting with the lawyers, minister Gurung said he would activate the Judicial Council to curb corruption in the judiciary.

“The government is committed to bring change in the judiciary,” vice president Upreti quoted Gurung as saying. According to him, Minister Gurung told them that the government would activate the council headed by the CJ and focus on taking action against corrupt judges and judicial staff. “We can also move ahead with new appointments in the judiciary,” Upreti quoted Gurung as saying. However, Gurung said fresh appointment of judges would be adopted in the new constitution to be written by the Constituent Assembly.