The Nepal Bar Association and dissident justices of the Supreme Court continued to protest against Chief Justice Cholendra Shumsher JB Rana today as well and threatened to intensify their agitation.

The NBA, which continued to stage sit-in at the Supreme Court, also protested in all high courts and high court benches across the country where central office bearers of the NBA addressed protest

programmes. Dissident justices of the apex court also continued to boycott hearing cases other than habeas corpus writ petitions and petitions seeking case withdrawal.

NBA General Secretary Lilamani Paudel said the central office bearers of the NBA addressed corner meetings at protest sites and answered protesting lawyers' queries.

He said the central office bearers of the lawyers' umbrella body also briefed protesting lawyers about why the NBA was protesting against the chief justice demanding his resignation.

Paudel said NBA chapters in high courts and district courts demanded lottery-based cause list also in high courts and district courts. The Supreme Court has already passed its new regulations that curtail chief justice's role in assigning cases by incorporating provisions whereby cases shall be assigned to SC justices on the basis of lottery-based system.

Asked what the NBA would do after Friday when the current phase of protest programmes ends, Paudel said since Rana had not resigned from his post even after a month-long protests, protesting lawyers were running out of patience and would intensify their protests and take to the streets.

Meanwhile, all justices other than the CJ today met and decided to hold discussions with the NBA office bearers tomorrow before holding a full court meeting. A Supreme Court Justice told THT that dissident justices decided to follow lottery-based cause lists from December 1. Dissident justices also decided not to share any bench with the CJ when they start hearing cases from December 1.

The NBA has accused the CJ of entering a quid pro quo deal with the executive and seeking to delay hearing of cases filed against appointments made to constitutional bodies where Rana has a conflict of interest. These appointments were made by the KP Sharma Oli government when the threshold for the Constitutional Council meeting was arbitrarily lowered through an ordinance and the CJ attended the CC meeting boycotted by the leader of opposition and the speaker.

A version of this article appears in the print on November 25, 2021, of The Himalayan Times.