A constitutional bank headed by Supreme Justice Cholendra Shumsher Rana will hear all petitions on Friday alleging Prime Minister KP Sharma Oli’s attempt to abruptly dissolve parliament in an intensified battle between the two warring parties of the ruling Communist Party of Nepal for control the party is challenged.
The five-member bank, founded under Chief Justice Rana, will pass judgment on Prime Minister Oli’s move to dissolve the 275-member House of Representatives, the lower house of parliament, My Republica reported.
The five-person bench consists of Judges Bishwambhar Prasad Shrestha, Tej Bahadur KC, Anil Kumar Sinha and Hari Krishna Karki.
On Wednesday, Chief Justice Rana’s only bank forwarded all written petitions to the Constitutional Bank. A total of 13 written petitions were submitted to the Supreme Court contesting the government’s decision to dissolve parliament.
During Wednesday’s hearing, senior lawyers, citing constitutional provisions, argued that Prime Minister Oli had no right to dissolve the House while there was an opportunity to form an alternative government.
Meanwhile, Prime Minister Oli has called a cabinet meeting on Friday evening. He is likely to reshuffle the cabinet after seven ministers close to the Prachanda-led faction resign, the newspaper said, citing a source familiar with the prime minister’s office.
The cabinet led by Oli now has 18 members, including ministers and ministers of state.
On Thursday, Chinese Ambassador Hou Yanqi met with the Executive Chairman of the Communist Party of Nepal, Pushpa Kamal Dahal ‘Prachanda’, who claimed control of the ruling party after removing Prime Minister Oli from the post of chairman of the parliament and chairman of the party.
At a meeting of his affiliated members of the Central Committee on Thursday, Oli announced that Prachanda would be recalled from the position of executive chairman of the party.
Prior to this, the faction of the ruling party led by Prachanda elected him as the new parliamentary chairman and replaced Prime Minister Oli.
Nepal got into a political crisis after President Bidya Devi Bhandari dissolved the House of Representatives on Sunday on the recommendation of Prime Minister Oli and announced dates for mid-term elections, which sparked protests from part of the ruling party and various opposition parties, including the Nepali Congress.
The ruling party is now practically split more than two years after its founding following the merger of CPN-UML under the leadership of 68-year-old Oli and the CPN-Maoist Center under the leadership of 66-year-old Prachanda in May 2018.
Both factions of the party have intensified their efforts to maintain the party’s official recognition along with the electoral symbol. The two factions are now busy developing strategies to take control of the party.