Discussion on the impeachment motion against Chief Justice (CJ) Cholendra Shumsher Rana will be held in the House of Representatives (HoR) on Sunday.
The HoR's tentative schedule for Sunday includes discussion on the impeachment motion against Rana but how long the process will be stretched is not certain.
A total of 98 ruling HoR members had registered the impeachment motion against CJ Rana on February 13. He has been suspended since then.
CPN (Maoist Center) lawmaker Dev Gurung, who had proposed the impeachment motion along with Pushpa Bhusal of Nepali Congress (NC) and Jeevan Ram Shrestha of CPN (Unified Socialist), had presented the impeachment proposal for discussion in the House on March 13.
Clause 161 of the HoR regulations has set a deadline for each step in a way that speaker cannot sit on the process once an impeachment proposal is registered. Speaker is obliged to set a date for discussion within seven days of registration. If the House session is not on, the House session should be called within 15 days and discussion on the proposal held within three days of the start of session as per the regulations.
But Speaker Sapkota has not held discussion in almost three months after start of the budget session of the federal parliament.
Speaker Sapkota had formed an 11-strong impeachment recommendation committee on March 6. The committee includes four CPN-UML lawmakers Bishnu Paudel, Lal Babu Pandit, Shiva Maya Tumbahangphe, and Krishna Bhakta Pokharel; Min Bahadur Bishwakarma and Ram Bahadur Bista from Nepali Congress; Yashoda Subedi and Rekha Bista from CPN (Maoist Center); Kalyani Khadka from CPN (Unified Socialist); Ekbal Miya of Loktantrik Samajwadi Party (LSP); and Pramod Sah from Janata Samajwadi Party (JSP).
Dev Gurung had presented the impeachment proposal for discussion in the House on March 13. Speaker Sapkota had scheduled the discussion for March 16 but the government ended the House session before March 16.
The impeachment proposal has yet to be sent to the impeachment recommendation committee as required by the HoR regulations. The issue has to be concluded within three months of the impeachment proposal reaching the recommendation committee.
The ruling coalition seems to have adopted the strategy of stretching the impeachment process until Rana retires on December 13.