KATHMANDU, July 1: The Supreme Court on Sunday paved the way for the caretaker government led by Baburam Bhattarai to bring a partial budget for the fiscal year 2012/13.
The apex court has asked the government to bring only one-third of the budget estimated for the next fiscal, refusing to issue an interim order in a writ petition filed by advocate Rajesh Silwal, who had demanded SC order against the government’s move to bring full-size budget without political consensus.
A joint bench of Justices Damodar Prasad Sharma and Ram Kumar Shah issued the order as per as per Article 96 (1) and (2) of the interim constitution that only allows for a partial budget if there is no consensus among all political parties.
Notwithstanding anything contained in this Part, a portion of the expenditure estimated for the financial year may, when an Appropriation Bill is under consideration, be incurred in advance by an Act, states Article 96 (1) of the Interim Constitution.
Likewise, Clause 2 of the same article states that a Vote on Account Bill shall not be introduced until the estimates of revenues and expenditures have been presented in accordance with the provisions of Article 93, and the sums involved in the Vote on Account shall not exceed one-third of the estimate of expenditures for the financial year.
During hearings on Sunday, the justice duo had asked the lawyers to clarify as to who should be held responsible for the catastrophic situation that may arise in the event of the court barring the government from bringing the budget. The court has decided to hold further hearings on the issue after the government furnishes a written reply on the case.
The writ petition claims the caretaker government can bring the budget only through consensus with other political parties as per Article 43 of the interim constitution.