Assault on press widely deplored

- POST REPORT, Kathmandu
Assault on press widely deplored

Aug 25, 2014-

The ongoing obstruction in the printing and distribution of The Kathmandu Post and Kantipur dailies has drawn widespread condemnations from across the political spectrum.

Two former prime ministers—Baburam Bhattarai and Sher Bahadur Deuba—criticised the disruption imposed on the regular operation of the media.

Bhattarai visited the Kantipur Publications office in Tinkune, Subidhanagar, on Monday to assess the situation, as the CPN-Maoist trade union has been disrupting publication and distribution of the dailies for the past five days.

“Democracy is in the process of institutionalisation. We should not do anything that jeopardises the peace and constitution writing process,” said UCPN-Maoist leader Bhattarai, hinting at the CPN-Maoist obstruction.

Deuba, senior leader of the Nepali Congress, denounced the obstruction in distribution and attacks on Kantipur employees. “The act is a mockery of press freedom,” Deuba said in a statement.

“Any action that tramples on press freedom, human rights and right to information should be stopped immediately. It is the duty of democrats to honour the media that played a crucial role in ushering in democracy in the country,” Deuba stated.

NC leaders Gagan Thapa, Bal Krishna Khand, Ramhari Khatiwada, Chandra Bhandari and Bahadur Lama and a team of the Narahari Acharya-led Supreme Court Bar Association visited the Publications and deplored the violent acts.

“This issue matters not only Kantipur; it concerns every citizen,” said Thapa. He termed the obstruction in the media house a criminal act. “The move is politically motivated and is not for the welfare of the Publications employees. It should be punished as per the law,” he said.

“It is inappropriate to use force to press one’s demands,” said NC leader Khand.

Senior Advocate Acharya said Bar was committed to the right to information. Secretary Bal Krishna Dhakal said the Bar stands for press freedom. National Human Rights Academy, Rastriya Prajatantra Party, Advertising Association of Nepal, Federation of Nepalese Indigenous Journalists, Federation of Nepali Journalists, FNJ Kantipur, Kantipur TV Employees Association and Kantipur Publications Workers Association have also condemned the union’s move.

Published: 26-08-2014 09:07

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