Freedom Forum is concerned over the statement of Minister of Internal Affairs and Law in Province 3, Salikram Jamakattel, who has warned the journalists that he would send them to jails if they kept on writing about the irregularities of current government led by Nepal Communist Party.
Speaking in a public program organized in Makwanpur on 9 January, Minister Jamakattel in a threatening tone asked journalists to remain in their limit and do not interfere with government works. According to him, journalists could not write critical news against them.
FF is shocked to know the reaction of Minister who as a part of government is responsible to draft provincial laws and policies. At a time when government intimidation towards civil society and journalists is growing, Minister's comment towards the journalists and press freedom is deplorable. This would certainly discourage the journalists to write critical news against the government's decisions, resulting in self-censorship.
Thus FF urges the Minister to respect press freedom and remember that journalism is the fourth estate. They have right to write news on any kind of irregularities and misconduct. Hence, Minister should be tolerant towards news and journalists if he is to work for good governance and democracy.
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