Writ filed against army mobilisation, first hearing on Sunday

KATHMANDU: Two advocates today filed a writ of certiorari and mandamus against the National Security Council’s recent decision to mobilise army in riot-hit zones including Kailali, Rautahat and Sarlahi.

The NSC on August 24 had decided to mobilise army in these districts in the wake of violent clashes in Tikapur of Kailali, where at least seven police personnel and a child were killed.

Advocates Roshan Kumar Jha and Yam Kumar Yonjan filed the writ petition at the apex court arguing that there was no provision for the mobilisation of Nepal Army in Section 24(b) of the Local Administration Act, 1971 as claimed by the Deputy Prime Minister and Home Minister Bamdev Gautam in the Parliament on Monday. The petitioners have said that as per Section 25 (b)(i), the local administration can use army only in supportive roles.

As per Article 144 (3) of the Interim Constitution, army could be mobilised by the President as recommended by the Cabinet.

The petitioners have said in their writ that as per Section 4 of the Military Act, 2007, Nepal Army’s job was to protect independence, sovereignty, territorial integrity of the nation and national unity.

The petitioners have also sought an interim order against the government’s decision to mobilise the army. They have said that the mobilisation of army could further agitate the protesters and could become a cause of irreparable damage.

The petitioners have named Office of the Prime Minister and Council of Ministers, National Security Council, Defence Ministry, Home Ministry and Parliament Secretariat as defendants.

The first hearing of the case is scheduled for Sunday.