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IG appointment case finally put to rest

  • Supreme Court quashes DIG Nawaraj Silwal’s writ
  • Says govt move of promoting Aryal as IGP lawful
- TIKA R PRADHAN, Kathmandu

Sep 13, 2017-The Supreme Court (SC) on Tuesday quashed a writ filed by DIG Nawaraj Silwal against a government decision in relation to the appointment of the chief of Nepal Police.

The extended full bench of the apex court led by Chief Justice Gopal Parajuli also made it clear that the April 10 government decision of appointing Prakash Aryal as the police chief was lawful, ending a months-old case--one of the most controversial involving promotions in the security agency.

Tuesday’s court ruling says performance appraisal reports of the last four fiscal years obtained from the Public Service Commission showed Aryal’s marks were 154.2 while Silwal had 152.467.

This was a reversal of an earlier ruling by then chief justice Sushila Karki that Silwal had the highest marks than his three contenders.

Responding to Silwal’s February 12 petition, a full bench led by Karki on March 21 had observed that “based on the ranking as stated in Nepal Police Regulations 1992, Nawaraj Silwal has the highest marks followed by Prakash Aryal, Bam Bahadur Bhandari and Jaya Bahadur Chand” and quashed the government’s February 12 decision of appointing Chand as the chief of police. The bench, however, had stopped short of specifying the marks obtained by all the four contenders.

“While the Cabinet took the decision on February 12, the evaluation part [marks obtained] was completely overlooked. This cannot be considered appropriate,” the bench had then observed.

But on Tuesday, the Parajuli-led bench said: “The Supreme Court’s order of March 21 stated that writ petitioner Silwal received the highest marks but did not state any basis and reasons. At the same time, the SC had issued a mandamus to the government to appoint the one who had the highest performance marks.”

In his petition, Silwal had claimed that he had the highest performance marks.

“On April 10, the authorities decided to appoint Aryal as the inspector general of police taking various provisions of Rule 41 of Police Regulations into consideration,” the apex court said, approving the government decision of appointing Aryal as the police chief.

Silwal, who had first filed a writ challenging Chand’s appointment as the police chief on February 12, had again on April 11, a day after Aryal was promoted as the IGP, moved the apex court, claiming that he was the right contender for the post based on seniority and performance evaluation.

The IGP appointment case had given rise to some unprecedented developments which had at one point of time put the three state organs--judiciary, executive and the legislature--at loggerheads.

Four days prior to the scheduled final hearing on the IGP appointment case, lawmakers of the ruling Nepali Congress and CPN (Maoist Centre) on April 30 registered an impeachment motion against then chief justice Karki, first in the country’s history, accusing her of infringing upon the executive’s jurisdiction. The impeachment motion had resulted in Karki’s suspension as the CJ. But the SC on May 5 stayed the impeachment motion, allowing Karki to return to the court, which again created a tussle between the judiciary and the legislature.

The NC and Maoist lawmakers on June 7 withdrew the impeachment motion against Karki, but by then they had gathered enough criticism from several quarters.  

Silwal resigns

KATHMANDU: DIG Nawaraj Silwal resigned on Tuesday, hours after the Supreme Court quashed his writ against the government decision of appointing Prakash Aryal as the chief of Nepal Police. In a two-page statement, DIG Silwal has said he decided to “retire” from Nepal Police services. I had taken the IGP appointment issue to the court with the only intention of institutionalising professionalism in Nepal Police, he said in his statement, adding that the issue related to his professional and legal rights was “diverted”. (PR)

Published: 13-09-2017 08:35

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