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Nepal’s Chief Justice Sacked After He Is Accused of Faking Date of Birth
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Nepal’s Chief Justice Sacked After He Is Accused of Faking Date of Birth

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Nepal’s chief justice, Gopal Parajuli, left, has been fired after he was accused of faking his date of birth in order to stay in office past the mandatory retirement age.

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Prakash Mathema/Agence France-Presse — Getty Images

KATHMANDU, Nepal — Nepal’s chief justice was fired on Wednesday after the country’s judicial council secretariat, a constitutional body, found that he had faked his date of birth to remain in office, an accusation he denied.

The chief justice, Gopal Parajuli, emerged as a divisive figure in Nepal, a small Himalayan nation, when journalists published his academic records, which included multiple dates of birth. Then last month, Mr. Parajuli directed the country’s press council, an independent regulatory body set up by the government, to censor stories published about him.

According to the judicial secretariat, Mr. Parajuli’s date of birth is Aug. 5, 1952. Tikaram Bhattarai, a lawyer in Kathmandu, the capital, said that Mr. Parajuli was masking his real date of birth because he was older than 65, the age when a chief justice is required to retire in Nepal.

In a brief telephone interview, however, Mr. Parajuli, who assumed his position just eight months ago, insisted that his birthday was April 28, 1953, meaning he was still 64 and could remain in office.

“The letter sent by the judicial council secretariat is illegal,” he said. “I am not going to follow it.”

Mr. Parajuli said he would attend court on Thursday, but it was unclear whether he would be allowed to work.

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