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Maoists 'ban' newspaper circulation, pelt stone at press vehicle

 DECEMBER 07, 2009  The Unified Communist Party of Nepal (Maoist) cadres imposed ban on circulation of newspapers in Pokhara, located in the western part of country, on December 6, Sunday. Distributors could not circulate newspapers in the country's major tourist town due to Maoist thereat.

Maoist-affiliated Trade Union leaders called newspaper offices on Saturday evening and instructed them not to distribute any newspaper on the strike day. The leaders told them that they would allow the vehicles carrying newspapers to enter the town but would not permit them to distribute the copies in the market.

Republica, Nagarik and Annapurna Post, among other newspapers, could not be distributed due to Maoist obstruction. Staffers at the local offices of the publications told that they could not circulate their newspapers as pro-Maoist trade union leaders urged not to do so.

Some leaders claimed that they had no policy to obstruct in newspapers circulation. "I heard that some of our friends had telephoned newspaper offices and instructed them not to distribute newspapers on Sunday. This is not our official policy," said Maoist-affiliated Special District Organization Committee In-Charge Gupta Bahadur Hamal. "I have requested our friends not to obstruct in newspaper circulation."
However, Maoist has not taken any action against those who are guilty in the incident.
The Maoist party called nationwide general strike on Sunday against the Kailali incident where at least five people were killed in a clash between police and illegal settlers in public forest area on Friday.
Further, UCPN-Maoist protestors brought vehicular movement across the nation to a grinding halt during a Nepal bandh called by the party. Maoist activists have even been obstructing the vehicles used by the media covering the news.

Maoist protestors pelted stones at a vehicle belonging to Image Channel in Lainchaur during their protests. Windows pane of the vehicle is broken by the attack.
Freedom Forum denounces all above mentioned incidents and urges the concerned political party to act in responsible manner. The Forum also asks the government to bring the guilty to book at the earliest. 

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