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SC orders seven ministers to stop works



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SC orders seven ministers to stop works

By A Staff Reporter

Kathmandu, May 20:

The Supreme Court has issued an interim order in the name of the government preventing seven ministers who are not the member of the Federal Parliament from carrying out their ministerial duties.

A single bench of Chief Justice Cholendra Shumsher JB Rana issued the interim order on Thursday barring Ministers Ram Bahadur Thapa 'Badal' (Home Minister), Top Bahadur Rayamajhi (Energy Minister), Lekh Raj Bhatta (Minister for Industry, Commerce and Supplies), Prabhu Shah (Minister for Urban Development), Gauri Shankar Chaudhari (Labour Minister), Mani Thapa (Minister for Water Supply and Sanitation) and Dawa Lama (Minister for Youth and Sports) from working in their capacity as ministers.

The Apex Court has said that the ministers would not be able to attend their duties until the final verdict of the case.

On May 14, the ministers had taken the oath of office and secrecy after the re-appointed Prime Minister formed the same Council of Ministers as before.

The interim order states that according to the Constitution, the appointed ministers must obtain membership of the parliament within six months of appointment. "However, re-appointment of non-MPs on ministerial position is prima facie against Article 78 (1), (2) and (3) of the Constitution," read the order.

Article 78 (1) states that the President may, on the recommendation of the Prime Minister, appoint a person who is not a member of the federal parliament as a minister.

However, according to Article 78  (2) and (3), the minister appointed as per Clause 1 must obtain membership of the federal parliament within six months from the date of taking oath by her. If the minister fails to obtain membership within six months, s/he is not qualified to be reappointed as minister during the term of the House of Representatives.

Advocates Biraj Thapa and Kapildev Dhakal had filed a writ petition at the Top Court citing that the appointment of seven leaders ministers was unconstitutional as the Constitution permits a non-parliamentarian to serve as minister only once while the seven ministers were re-appointed for the second time.