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Banda organizers in anti-press incidents

Freedom Forum has recorded various anti-press incidents in different parts of the country during the banda (general shutdown) called by some fringe political parties on March 6 and 7, 2013.

A policeperson seized cameras from the journalists while taking photographs in Hetauda, a city in the southern plain of the central region on March 6, 2013.

Policeperson Dharmendra Prasad Yadav seized the cameras from reporters to a local Team Television, Anil Parajuli and Arati Dhakal, when they were taking photographs during the banda.

Same day, the banda supporters pelted stones on a vehicle distributing the Rajdhani daily early morning in Banepa, a neighboring city of the capital.

Similarly, the banda supporters vandalized a vehicle carrying the staffs of the Mountain Television at Bijulibazar in the capital on March 7, 2013.

Although the vehicle (Ba 9 Cha 2933) was damaged, the Television staffs escaped injury, said Khila Karki, reporter to the Mountain Television while talking to Freedom Forum's Media Monitoring Desk.

A press vehicle belonging to the Republic Media- publisher of the Nagarik daily and the Republica daily-was vandalized by the banda supporters at Mirchaiya of Siraha, a district in the southern plain of Nepal on March 7, 2013.

According to the Nagarik daily editor, the vehicle (Ko 1 Cha 5928) was damaged while it was ferrying the newspapers early morning.

A political front, comprising fringe parties, including the Communist Party of Nepal-Maoist, organized the nationwide banda on March 6 against the big parties' efforts to make prime minister to the Chief Justice.

With similar stand, other small parties led by Madhesi Janadhikar Forum-Nepal, called the banda on March 7, 2013. It also demanded the restoration of the Constituent Assembly.

Freedom Forum condemns the anti press incidents and strongly urges the banda organizers to respect the value of media and people's right to information. Also, they need to make the protest peaceful and respect other's right while demanding their rights.