Govt Defends Appointment of CoAS Katawal
The government on Wednesday told the Supreme Court (SC) that General Rookmangud Katawal was appointed the Chief of the Army Staff (CoAS) in accordance with the law. Responding to show cause notices issued by the Supreme Court, the Office of the Prime Minister and Cabinet (PMO) and the Ministry of Defence told the Supreme Court that the appointment was done as per the law and the need and interest of the government of Nepal.
Secretary of the PMO, Madhav Paudel, and Secretary of Defence, Bishnu Dutta Uprety, separately submitted written affidavits in the Supreme Court. "The Council of Ministers has the authority to appoint eligible individuals to different posts to maintain law and order situation in the country," the PMO's written affidavit said. "The government's authority to make appointments cannot be challenged in the SC," the PMO said.
"It also added that the writ petitioner had filed the petition at the SC, though he has no locus standi to file the petition without violation of his fundamental rights," the PMO added. The Defence Ministry also maintained that the government has the authority to appoint any eligible candidate to any post.
The PMO and the Defence Ministry have asked the apex court to quash the petition. Accusing Katawal of faking his date of birth while joining the service, advocate Dilhari Sharma had filed the petition.