Nepal's Supreme Court likely to pronounce verdict on House dissolution on Monday

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Kathmandu, Jul 11 (PTI) Nepal's Supreme Court is likely to deliver its verdict on Monday on a slew of writ petitions challenging the dissolution of the House of Representatives by President Bidya Bhandari, a judgement which is expected to end the months-long political deadlock in the Himalayan nation.

At the recommendation of embattled Prime Minister K P Sharma Oli, President Bhandari dissolved the lower house for the second time in five months on May 22 and announced snap elections on November 12 and November 19.

As many as 30 petitions were filed at the Supreme Court against the move. Prime Minister Oli is currently heading a minority government after losing a trust vote in the 275-member House.

A petition was also filed by the Opposition parties’ alliance with the signature of 146 lawmakers demanding reinstatement of the Lower House of Parliament and appointment of Nepali Congress president Sher Bahadur Deuba as the prime minister.

The Constitutional Bench of the apex court concluded the hearings on the writ petitions on July 5. A four-member amicus curiae also presented its opinion on the House dissolution case.

The amicus curiae comprises senior advocates Raghavlal Baidya and Usha Malla Pathak from Nepal Bar Association and Komal Prakash Ghimire and Prakash Bahadur KC from the Supreme Court Bar Association.

The court is most likely to issue its verdict on the petition on Monday, said senior advocate Dinesh Tripathi, who is also one of the petitioners.

The Supreme Court will take into consideration the precedence and provisions of the Constitution while giving its verdict and it will be an historic one, Tripathi told PTI.

The Election Commission last week announced the schedule for the upcoming midterm polls with the election process starting from July 15.

Nepal plunged into a political crisis on December 20 last year after President Bhandari dissolved the House and announced fresh elections on April 30 and May 10 at the recommendation of Prime Minister Oli, amidst a tussle for power within the ruling Nepal Communist Party (NCP).

In February, the apex court reinstated the dissolved House of Representatives, in a setback to Prime Minister Oli who was preparing for snap polls.

Oli repeatedly defended his move to dissolve the House of Representatives, saying some leaders of his party were attempting to form a 'parallel government'. PTI SBP SCY AKJ SCY

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