KATHMANDU: An impeachment motion has been registered against Chief Justice of Nepal Cholendra Shumsher Rana at Parliament Secretariat on Sunday.
As many as 98 ruling party lawmakers on Sunday morning registered the motion against Rana who has been in the eye of the storm since October 2021.
The lawmakers from the ruling coalition were led by Law Minister Dilendra Prasad Badu.
As soon as the impeachment motion was registered, Rana was suspended and senior Supreme Court Justice Dipak Karki took over the charge as Acting Chief Justice.
"We have registered an impeachment motion against the chief justice," Dev Gurung, a lawmaker from the Communist Party of Nepal (Maoist Centre), told the media.
Gopal Nath Yogi, secretary at the Parliament Secretariat, said lawmakers from the Nepali Congress, CPN (Maoist Centre) and CPN (Unified Socialist) registered the impeachment motion.
Article 101 (2) of the Constitution of Nepal states that one fourth of the MPs can register an impeachment motion against any official holding a constitutional position on the ground of failing to perform duty effectively or of working against the constitution or seriously violating their code of conduct.
While one fourth of the lawmakers can register the impeachment motion, it needs a two-third majority of Parliament to endorse it.
The support of the main opposition CPN-UML is a must to endorse the motion, as the parties that have filed the motion have just 133 votes in total.
It needs 181 votes to pass the impeachment motion in the 271-strong Parliament.
An impeachment motion, however, automatically leads to the suspension of the Chief Justice.
Article 101 (6) of the Constitution says after the commencement of impeachment proceedings the Chief Justice or judge of the Supreme Court shall not be allowed to discharge the duties of his or her office pending the settlement of such proceedings.
The justices from the Supreme Court and the legal professionals had been protesting against Rana since October last year.
The justices who had been boycotting the bench returned to hear cases on December 1 after the adoption of the raffle system in finalising the benches and assigning the cases to them.
As the justices refused to share a bench with Rana, he hasn't heard the cases since the adoption of the raffle system.
Lawyers, however, have continued their protests.