Friday, October 20, 2006

SC overturns government decision to retire General Malla

The Supreme Court (SC) has overturned the decision of the government to retire Major General Pradip Pratap Bam Malla.

The special bench of the apex court comprising judges Sharada Shrestha, Rajendra Kumar Bhandari and Tahir Ali Ansari has decided that the government's decision was illegal. It has ordered the Office of the Prime Minister and the Cabinet and the Ministry of Defense to reinstate General Malla.

Malla was retired after the government made changes in the Military Regulations. It amended the existing provision of five-years of tenure for Major General and shortened it to three years, based on which Malla had to retire. He had already served as Major General for three years when he was asked to retire three months ago.

General Malla, however, had knocked the doors of the apex court challenging the government decision. In his petition, he had stated that the changed law cannot be applied to him in retrospective effect. He has demanded that he be allowed to serve for two more years.

After the court order, General Malla said it was an example of how the court can give justice to those who have been made to suffer from injustice. General Malla is one of the senior-most officers of Nepalese Army and is in line to become the next chief of the army staff after the current chief retires.

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