A Human Right defender, RTI activist and a senior journalist Ram Bikash Chaudhary received death threat by local representative for seeking information on July 5 2018. The incident occurred at Sammarimai Rural Municipality of Rupandehi, district. Rupandehi lies in province 5 of Nepal.
Chairman of Rural Municipality, Jetendranath Shukla threatened and misbehaved with journalist Chaudhary while he visited the municipality office to get information about the supply of vehicle fuel in the office. Journalist Chaudhary had filed the RTI application on June 11. Mr. Chaudhary is associated with www.cpostnews.com, an online portal, and writes on corruption and governance issues.
Talking to FF’s monitoring desk, Journalist Chaudhary said “I visited the municipality office to inquire about the RTI I had filed earlier. I was waiting at the office when suddenly the drunk chairman spoke foul words, grabbed my wrist and pushed me out of the office. He even threatened to kill me and said he won't give me any information."
Chaudhary shared that Chairman grossly threatened "I am not going to give you any information. You can write whatever you want. I am a don of this area. You will regret your actions. I will make you disappear."
Journalist Chaudhary has registered the case in Federation of Nepali Journalists (FNJ) district chapter Rupandehi seeking safety and security. Chaudhary demanded that the perpetrator should be booked for the investigation as soon as possible.
Earlier, Chaudhary had exposed cases of irregularities by the same rural municipality office. He had covered news stories related to misuse of government vehicle and formation of local judicial committee in the local body against the spirit of the constitution.
The rural municipality officials have become furious with me following coverage of their wrongdoings, Chaudhary shared to Freedom Forum.
Freedom Forum strongly condemns the threat issued to journalist by local representatives for publishing the news. Reporting and exposing irregularities and corruption of public concern is the prime job of journalists. FF urges the concerned authority to investigate the incident and take immediate action to ensure safety of the journalist.
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