Wednesday, January 16, 2008

New code of conduct for judges proposed
In a bid to introduce timely updates in the existing code of conduct for judges, the Judicial Council (JC) has proposed a new set of code of conduct.
The 12-page code of conduct, which was presented before the conference of judges held Monday for discussion, states that it is unethical for judges to seek political influence for appointment, transfer, deputation and other facilities.
This is something new compared to the existing code of conduct, which has been in place since 1998. This provision was proposed amidst perceived fear of political influence in appointment, transfer and deputation of judges in view of the new interim constitution, which has brought the judiciary under the parliament.
Similarly, the proposed code of conduct has addressed a long-time controversy whether judges should meet parties to cases at their residence. According to the proposed provision, it is unethical for judges to welcome the parties at their residence. The controversy erupted after the Post ran a story about a meeting of the then Chief Justice Dilip Kumar Paudel with parties to cases at his official residence in Baluwatar, Kathmandu.
The new code of conduct will be effective after the Full Court, the apex policy-making body of the judiciary, approves it.
In the meantime, a committee headed by Supreme Court Justice Khil Raj Regmi has been assigned to finalize the draft of the new code of conduct.
JC drafted the new code of conduct amidst calls that the existing code of conduct be updated so that it conforms with international standards.

No comments: