Nepal: Notice issued to govt over dissolution of Parliament

The parties have warned they would enforce a nationwide strike if necessary to dislodge the caretaker government.

Kathmandu: As political crisis continues to simmer in Nepal, the Supreme Court today issued a show-cause notice to the Maoist-led government over the announcement of fresh elections for Constituent Assembly, giving it 10 days to reply.

Noting that the matter bore serious constitutional questions and public concern, the single bench of Justice Tahir Ali Ansari said a special bench should hear the case.

He has drawn attention of the Chief Justice towards the matter.

A Public Interest Litigation was filed yesterday by an advocate challenging the call for fresh elections on November 22 after warring political parties failed to promulgate a new constitution by the May 27 deadline.

The defendants including Prime Minister Baburam Bhattarai, Office of the Prime Minister and Council of Ministers, have been ordered to submit their written clarification within 10 days.

In his petition, the lawyer argued the move for early election was unconstitutional as the Interim Constitution neither provisioned for electing the CA again nor it was amended to pave the way for elections.

Meanwhile, 16 Nepalese opposition parties have joined hands to ask President Ram Baran Yadav to dismiss the country`s Maoist caretaker regime and replace it with National Consensus government.

The opposition parties comprising the Nepali Congress
CPN-UML, Rastriya Prajatantra Party and other groups have also threatened a nationwide stir to back their demands for dismissal of the Bhattarai government.

"We are not against elections, but we don`t want Maoists to conduct the elections," leaders of these parties said after submitting a joint memorandum to the president last night.

"We are demanding a new government that would have representation from all political parties to ensure that the polls are free and fair," said Nepali Congress Vice-president Ramchandra Poudyal.

They have asked the president to take necessary steps by exercising his constitutional and legal powers to pave the way for formation of a national consensus government.

The parties have warned they would enforce a nationwide strike if necessary to dislodge the caretaker government.

They said Bhattarai`s move to announce fresh election on November 22 without consulting other parties was "unconstitutional".

"The Prime Minister has committed a blunder by announcing the new election date without consulting other parties and without amending the Interim Constitution, which does not has such provision, so we will launch agitation to dislodge this government by forging collaboration with other parties," said Poudyal.

"We have, urged the president to take necessary steps to form a national consensus government within his constitutional and legal jurisdiction," said CPN-ML President C P Mainali.

They said the Constituent Assembly (CA) election was not possible without a national consensus government in place.


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