JC picks four for permanent SC appointment

Kathmandu, June 22:

The Judicial Council (JC) headed by Chief Justice Dilip Kumar Paudel today decided to write to the parliament on Sunday to conduct a parliamentary hearing on its recommendation to appoint four ad hoc judges as permanent judges of the Supreme Court.

The JC has recommended the appointment of Damodar Prasad Sharma, Ram Kumar Prasad Shah, Kalyan Shrestha and Gauri Dhakal as the judges of the apex court.

The four ad hoc judges, who were appointed to the apex court for two years, will lose their jobs in August if the parliament, following the hearing, does not approve of their appointment. The decision will be forwarded to the parliament on Sunday, a member of the JC told this daily today.

SC justice Kedar Prasad Giri, Minister for Law, Justice and Parliamentary Affairs Narendra Bikram Nembang and JC members Moti Kaji Sthapit and Basudev Dhungana attended today’s


According to the JC member, the Chief Justice will appoint them if the parliamentary hearing endorses their names for the posts. Earlier, the king used to appoint Supreme Court judges.

The JC, however, did not recommend ad hoc judges Pawan Kumar Ojha, Tahir Ali Ansari and Rajendra Prasad for the hearing. Their two-year tenure ends in December.

Ojha was the attorney-general during the direct rule of king Gyanendra.

The second amendment to the constitution has it that a parliamentary hearing should be

conducted prior to the appointment of SC judges.

According to Article 155 (1) of the constitution, parliamentary hearing is required prior to the appointment of SC judges, ambassadors and officials of constitutional bodies.

Talking to this daily, Ojha said, “I don’t care whom the Judicial Council recommended and whom it did not recommend.”

Ad hoc judge Kalyan Shrestha said he will attend the parliamentary hearing. “Being a law-abiding person, I will abide by the constitution,” Shrestha told this daily. “However, there are some serious questions about the independence of the judiciary and the rationality of the hearing,” he said.

“Why the parliament did not hold consultations with the apex court while amending the constitution is a different matter altogether.”

“We will conduct a hearing within 15 days after getting a recommendation from the JC,” Asta Laxmi Shakya, a member of the hearing committee, said.