The constitutional bench will not hear the petitions related to the House dissolution on Monday after Chief Justice (CJ) Cholendra Shumsher Rana is taken ill.
CJ Rana informed the Supreme Court (SC) administration that the bench will not conduct hearing as he is unwell. A justice who is in the bench confirmed with Setopati that the administration informed four justices in the bench that hearing will not be conducted on Monday as CJ Rana has taken ill.
The exact health problem of CJ Rana has yet to be known.
Lawyers of Prime Minister (PM) KP Sharma Oli on Sunday protested against the constitutional bench formed by CJ Rana on the basis of seniority.
Advocates including Rajaram Ghimire, Krishna Prasad Bhandari, Deepak Mishra and Yagya Mani Neupane submitted an application claiming that 11 justices in the current 13-strong roster for constitutional bench cannot hear the case.
They argued that those 11 justices cannot hear the case as some of the petitioners were part of the parliamentary hearing committee that conducted hearing for their appointment as Supreme Court (SC) justices.
The lawyers submitting the application are those who have also filed a petition demanding that the House be reinstated and Oli again made PM.
CJ Rana told the lawyers to trust the justices after they submitted application before the bench on Sunday. He warned that they can be punished for contempt of court for the application and asked them to withdraw the application.
But the lawyers replied that they are ready to face action and are in process of registering the application.
Attorney General Ramesh Badal, meanwhile, demanded that the previous constitutional bench formed by CJ Rana should hear the case.
C Rana earlier on Sunday formed the five-strong constitutional bench led by him and including Justices Deepak Kumar Karki, Meera Khadka, Ishwore Khatiwada and Ananda Mohan Bhattarai to hear the case.
He was forced to form the bench on the basis of seniority after Justices Deepak Kumar Karki and Ananda Mohan Bhattarai quit the bench he had constituted earlier following refusal by Justices Bam Kumar Shrestha and Tej Bahadur KC to recuse writing that the case about CPN unification is related to the House dissolution.
Lawyers pleading on behalf of the petitioners had protested against presence of Justices Bam Kumar Shrestha and Tej Bahadur KC in the constitutional bench hearing the petitions related to the House dissolution.
Shrestha was part of the joint bench also including Kumar Regmi that invalidated the unification of CPN on March 7 reinstating CPN-UML and CPN (Maoist Center) to the state before their unification while KC was part of the bench that refused to review that verdict.