Yet again, journalists exposing irregularities relating to contractor and government officials have been attacked.
Senior journalists Chhabilal Tiwari and Om Prakash Ghayal were attacked by a contractor on August 9 in Parbat, a district in Province 4 of Nepal. Journalist Ghayal is the station manager at Radio Saligram and Journalist Tiwari is associated with the Nagarik daily.
According to the Freedom Forum's representative for Province 4 Rajan Upadhaya, journalists Tiwari and Ghayal were attacked by the local contractor Puskal Sharma and his team at Chhamarke of Kushma-4 in the evening.
Both the journalists were assaulted while returning back from the café. The drunken contractor not only thrashed them but also abused verbally. He also tore Ghayal’s clothes injuring him.
Earlier, both journalists had exposed irregularities relating to the contractors and government officials.
Representative Upadhaya further reported that Deputy Superintendent of Police (DSP), Bhuwaneswar Tiwari of Kushma also condemned the attack and said that he was informed through telephone about the incident in the evening and he immediately ordered the Inspector for further investigation.
Both the journalists also filed an FIR in the District Administration Office, Parbat.
With the federalism in place, the local levels have been empowered with huge budget and authorities to propel the development activities. But the irregularities on the development activities are fueled by undue contract involving the government officials. These are obviously the stories for journalists to investigate and bring the facts to light. But, the growing hostility to the media for reporting corruption and irregularities is taking toll on press freedom.
Freedom Forum therefore vehemently condemns the attack on the journalists and demands urgent action from the authorities to book the attackers. It is the sheer violation of press freedom and freedom of information. Such activities not only discourage free reporting but also contribute to self-censorship, which is against the media freedom and professionalism.
For further information;
Post Box No: 24292
Phone No. 4102030, 4102022
Website: www.nepalpressfreedom.org; www.freedomforum.org.np
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