December 1, 2021, Wednesday
Nepal 1:37:26 pm

Re-focusing on independent judiciary

The Nepal Weekly
October 26, 2021

By TNW correspondent

Nepali public sphere and media along with lawyers, people interested in court matters and politicos this week got focused on re-emphasizing the independence of judiciary. ‘The Chief Justice should take responsibility for ensuring sanctity of judiciary,’ they reiterated.

One of the latest reasons triggering fresh focus on independent judiciary in public conversation is: the recent media-news that the CJ demanded a share in Deuba-cabinet. The news, denied as false by the CJ, the Supreme Court and top ruling political leaders, spread like wild fire creating controversy over the head of judiciary.

Critics interpreted the demand for a share in government as a sort of give and take between the executive and the judiciary which cannot be tolerated in a democracy which thrives only on the principles of check and balance and separation of power among the legislature, executive and the judiciary.

A minister appointed recently by PM Deuba happened to be a relative of CJ and non-member of parliament. The issue added fuel to the fire. The minister concerned, although a member of PM Deuba’s Nepali Congress party, resigned later under huge public controversy. His resignation did not contribute to the end of the controversy.

The issue further inspired legal experts and all those believing in separation of power among the organs of the state to re-visit the need for keeping the judiciary and justices above any controversy. It is in that context all sought cooperation from the CJ to act effectively to prove that he is above controversy and for preserving the sanctity of the judiciary. ‘All we want is clear proof that the CJ is, looks being above any type of controversy for guaranteeing the independence of the judiciary once again.’ Senior politicos would like to look at the controversy against the overall backdrop of political insatiability in the country. They find the legislature not being able to function normally because of continued obstruction by the opposition party. They find the judiciary being dragged into controversy day in and day out. They also find the government not being able to function promptly. ‘Such scenario cannot be tolerated in a democracy and all concerned should do the needful to end the stalemate,’ said the senior politicos.