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Nepali supreme court asks gov't to explain army chief's sacking
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20:59, May 14, 2009

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The Supreme Court (SC) of Nepal on Thursday issued a show cause notice to the government on a writ petition demanding the Apex Court intervention to scrap the cabinet's decision of sacking Chief of Army Staff (CoAS) Rookmangud Katawal.

The one-member bench of justice Bharat Raj Upreti asked the government to furnish explanation on Katawal's sacking within the next 15 days.

The writ petition, filed by advocate Damodar Poudel on Wednesday, also asked the SC to scrap the cabinet decision of appointing Katawal's deputy Kul Bahadur Khadka as the acting army chief.

The government led by the Unified Communist Party of Nepal (Maoist) (UCPN-M) on May 3 had sacked Katawal and appointed second in command Kul Bahadur Khadka as the acting chief of army.

The decision led to coalition parties pulling out of the government.

Following the government's decision tabled, President Ram Baran Yadav faxed a special instruction to CoAS Katawal, asking him to continue in his office, which the UCPN-M leaders termed as "unconstitutional". The UCPN-M Chairman Prachanda, hence, resigned from the post of the prime minister on May 4.

The SC on May 5 had also asked the President Secretariat, Cabinet Secretariat and CoAS Katawal to furnish their written explanations before the court within the next ten days.

Source: Xinhua

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