Print Edition - 2014-08-26  |  Nation

Kantipur blockade draws flak

- POST REPORT, Kathmandu
Kantipur blockade draws flak

Aug 25, 2014-The ongoing obstruction in the distribution of Kantipur and The Kathmandu Post dailies by CPN-Maoist affiliated All Nepal Revolutionary Federation of Trade Union has courted widespread condemnation from media, civil society, political parties and business community.

Deploring the obstruction, they have urged the agitating union to settle the dispute and resume the distribution immediately. In a statement released on Monday,  the Federation of Napalese Chambers of Commerce and Industry (FNCCI) has deplored the actions of CPN-Maoist affiliated trade union intervening on the people’s right to information guaranted by the constitution. “The FNCCI is firm on its stance that regular works of the enterprises should not be disrupted and any labour-related issues should be solved through mutual discussion,” the statement reads. “The intervention in the media is a breach of  people’s right to information.” Calling the disruption of newspaper distribution unpardonable, the apex body of the business community has demanded the government create a conducive environment for the smooth operation of the media house. Beside Kantipur Publications, the CPN- Maoist-affiliated trade union has also targeted nine other firms—CG Telecommuni-cations, Nabil Bank, Hyatt Hotel, Pashupati Foods, Explore Himalayan Trekking Travels, Himalayan Expedition Ink, Peak Promotion Private Limited, Hari Shiddi Bricks and Tile Factory and Sipradi Trading.

Speaking in Parliament, Nepali Congress lawmaker Dhan Raj Gurung has expressed concern over the obstruction of the dailies by the trade union. Issuing a statement on Monday, Gurung said the union’s move was not only the disruption in a single media house but also the interference in the entire press freedom and democracy. “The infringement in the press freedom and citizens’ right to information should be ended immediately,” he said.

The Nepal Bar Association (NBA) has labelled the union’s actions as a threat to the freedom of expression and speech in a democratic society, saying the move had infringed the rights secured by the Interim Constitution of Nepal 2006.

It has appealed the concerned stakeholders to immediately resolve the issue through talks. “NBA appeals the government to find a solution to such activities and problems that threaten the judiciary, press freedom and human rights,” NBA General Secretary Sunil Kumar Pokharel said in a statement.

The Nepal Human Rights Organisation has also termed the union’s actions against the spirit of free press, fundamental of human rights.

Published: 26-08-2014 09:16

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