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Freedom Forum concerns Recent Incidents of press freedom violation

Freedom Forum is concerned over the anti-press incidents occurred in various parts of the country for over the past week. Despite the constitutional guarantee of press freedom and freedom of expression, Nepali media sector has been under the constant attack and obstruction from different fronts. It is the responsibility of the government to devise necessary actions to curb press gagging activities and ensure congenial atmosphere where these rights could be enjoyed by people.

In the series of anti-press incidents, director of Kantipur Publications Rameshwor Thapa was issued a death threat on March 10, Wednesday.
 
Thapa received two SMS on his cell phone from an unidentified foreign number on Wednesday evening.
 
Earlier on Feb. 11 and 12, Sirohiya and editors of The Kathmandu Post and Kantipur were threatened with life over phone and email for covering news on the killing of media entrepreneur Jamim Shah.
 
In yet another incident, Netra Kumar Sunuwar, an acting editor of Udaypur Post published from eastern district Udaypur, Gaighat, received death threat from an unidentified person.

He received such a threat on March 3, Wednesday night. The reason behind the threat is yet to be cleared.
 
Similarly, Young Communist League (YCL) cadres attacked and injured Saroj Thapa, a local reporter of mid-western Dolpa district of Nepal, on March 11.
 
Blaming that journalist Thapa was supporter of ruling Communist Party of Nepal (United Marxist Leninist), YCL cadres brutally thrashed him while he was sleeping in his home.
Journalist Thapa sustained injury seriously and he was rushed to Nepalgunj by helicopter for treatment.
 
Further, constituent Assembly (CA) members Baban Singh threatened Rautahat-based journalist Rajendra Kshetri of life on 13 March.
 
Following a news published in a local newspaper CA member Singh threatened him of killing him over the phone. A news report of capturing his motorbike by police personnel was published on local Crime Express daily recently.
 
Freedom Forum deplores all above mentioned incidents. Regarding the threat to director of Kantipur publication Rameshwor Thapa, the Forum wants to remind the deteriorating security situation for journalist of Nepal to the government. 'This is not the first incident but one among the series', The Forum says. The Forum urges the government to investigate the incident in serious manner. 'The culprit behind the incident should not be left without legal action', asserts the Forum.
 
As far as other incident is concerned, the Forum asks the local administration to provide security to journalist and bring the guilty to book. The Forum also asks the CA member Singh to act in responsible manner and to ensure that such incidents do not recur.

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