The Supreme Court (SC) has issued an interim order instructing the government to make arrangements for prisoners to vote in the upcoming parliamentary elections.
A single bench of Justice Sapana Pradhan Malla, hearing a writ petition filed by law students Pratikshya KC and Nishant Pokharel, has ordered to make arrangements for inmates to vote in the proportional representation (PR) electoral system in the upcoming elections.
“As the Election Commission has been collecting and updating voter list since June 15, an Interim order has been issued to collect and update voter list of inmates for the proportional representation electoral system of the House of Representatives election,” the SC order states.
The petition filed by KC and Pokharel had demanded voting rights even for prisoners.
The SC has reminded how names of government employees, army personnel, the then Maoist combatants who were in cantonments and prisoners were collected in temporary voter list and voting rights granted for PR electoral system in the first and second Constituent Assembly elections in 2008 and 2013 respectively.
The Apex Court has also based its interim order on its precedent that stated that all the fundamental rights of an inmate cannot be considered suspended and other rights apart from the rights to move freely cannot be hijacked.