SC allows convicts to file name for election
The Supreme Court has directed the government not to debar convicted persons as well as those against whom charges of heinous crimes have been framed by a court of law from contesting elections.
This became apparent after a single bench of Justice Tarka Raj Bhatta Monday stayed till Thursday (September 26) the election related provision of the Constituent Assembly Member Election Ordinance, 2013 that bar murder convicts from contesting elections.
The SC ruling comes in response to a petition filed by Advocate Biswo Prakash Bhandari on September 19 in which it has been argued that the upcoming election should not debar murder convicts from contesting polls since the 2008 CA election legislation had also not prevented murder convicts from running in the election.
Justice Bhatta said the order would remain in place until September 26 when both the petitioners and the defendants are set to discuss whether it should continue.
The latest stay order by the court comes as a serious blow to rights activists who have been demanding that convicted persons be prevented from contesting elections. The SC ruling also allows all murder convicts, including UCPN (Maoist) leader Bal Krishna Dhungel, to file candidacy for the November 19 election to the second Constituent Assembly.
Former CA member Dhungel, who was convicted by the Supreme Court in 2010 of murdering Ujjan Kumar Shrestha of Okhaldhunga, has been recommended by his party to contest the polls from Constituency No 2 in Okhaldhunga. nepalnews.com