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Writ dismissed

Friday, May 13th, 2016
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trc

War victims and human rights activists protest against the UML-Maoist deal in Kathmandu this week. Photo: Bikram Rai

The Supreme Court on Friday dismissed a writ petition filed against a nine-point deal between the UML and the UCPN (M).

A single bench of officiating Chief Justice  Sushila Karki ruled that the UML-UCPN (M) deal is a political document, and cannot be challenged at a court.

Advocates Ananta Raj Luintel and others had filed the writ arguing that the deal is an interference in independence of judiciary and is against the principles of transitional justice and human rights.

Last week, the UML Chair and Prime Minister KP Oli had signed this deal with the UCPN (M) Chair Pushpa Kamal Dahal in what is presumed to be a bid to save his government.

Human rights activists and war victims have objected to three provisions of the deal, which direct authorities to withdraw conflict-era cases and grant amnesty to alleged perpetrators of violation of human rights.

On Wednesday, they staged a sit-in to exert pressure on the ruling parties to scrap the deal, and ensure justice for war victims.

On Thursday, the International Commission of Jurists (ICJ), Human Rights Watch and Amnesty International said that the deal ‘threatens to entrench impunity for those who planned and carried out killings, enforced disappearances, torture, and other crimes in Nepal’s civil war, just as the country’s long delayed transitional justice process is finally about to get under way’.

Meanwhile, Deputy Prime Minister and Foreign Affairs Minister  has urged the international community to understand ‘the complex character and dynamics’ of Nepal’s peace process. He has also warned that that ‘rigid legality’ could lead to ‘an unraveling of the progress we have so far made in transforming society form conflict to peace’.

Nepal has formed Truth and Reconciliation Commission (TRC) to investigate conflict-era cases and deliver justice to war victims. But international human rights organisations have questioned the credibility of the TRC, and say that it could be just a political tool to grant blanket amnesty to perpetrators of human rights violation.

War victims speculate that the UML-Maoist deal further undermines the TRC’s credibility, and they might never get justice.

 

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