Freedom Forum's stringer for Province 2 Ajay Sah has reported that Superintendent of Police Yagya Binod Pokharel manhandled Nagarik daily's reporter Madan Thakur while reporting on September 20 in Rautahat district.
Quoting reporter Thakur, Stringer Sah said, "While the reporter was about to take picture of the activities in the vote counting place, SP Pokharel seized his mobile warning not to take pictures. He not only spoke foul on the reporter in a huge gathering of public official but also ordered Deputy SP to drag him out of the place."
Reporter Thakur had reached Garuda municipality's vote counting place to report on obstruction of the counting. On the third day of the local poll, some political cadres obstructed vote counting at the place demanding recounting since 4:00 in the morning.
On the other hand, SP Pokharel denied misbehaviour saying, reporter himself had given his mobile to keep with him. He had also called Nagarik daily's head office at Kathmandu not to publish the news.
Freedom Forum condemns the incident as it is a gross violation of press freedom. Such intimidation from the high level security officials on journalists at work needs serious attention from the concerned authorities why the free reporting is being jeopardized. FF strongly urges concerned authority to take step minimizing such incidents and respect journalists' right to free reporting as well as citizen's right to information.
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Website: www.nepalpressfreedom.org; www.freedomforum.org.np