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Nepal’s first female chief justice takes oath

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Kathmandu: After its first female President and Parliament speaker, Nepal will now have its first woman Supreme Court Chief Justice after Sushila Karki today formally assumed office. The Parliamentary Hearing Special Committee has yesterday unanimously approved the name of Karki, recommended by the Constitutional Council on April 10, for her appointment to the post, creating a new benchmark in the 64-year-long judicial history of the country.

Her appointment means Nepal will now have women as its President (Bidya Devi Bhandari), Speaker of Parliament (Onsari Gharti) and as the chief justice of the Supreme Court. Karki, 64, who is the 25th Chief Justice, took oath of office and secrecy from President Bhandari.

She had been working as acting Chief Justice for nearly three months following the delay in the Parliamentary hearing, which is a must in approving the appointment of any chief of the constitutional body in Nepal. Karki took charge of the Supreme Court as the Acting Chief Justice since her predecessor Kalyan Shrestha retired on April 14.


She was appointed the Ad-Hoc Justice at the Supreme Court in January 2009 and was promoted as Permanent Justice in November 2010. She will head the judiciary till June 6, 2017.

Karki, who has done her Masters in Political Science from Banaras Hindu University, is known for her ‘zero-tolerance’ for corruption and for her judgements like allowing women to pass their citizenship to their children, previously open only to men.