MARCH 22, 2009  Radio Mukti, an FM radio station run by a women’s group in Butwal, was vandalised by a group of students from Butwal Multiple Campus on Saturday night.

“The students attacked the radio station at 10:30 pm over a news broadcast on postponement of counting of votes of FSU election in the campus,” said chief of the radio station Kabita Sharma. She said the windowpanes of the building and a vehicle were damaged in the attack.

The radio station is operated from a rented house belonging to Beni Bahadur Poudel, former chief of campus. Poudel was chief election officer in the election at the campus.

Sharma did not name the persons involved in the vandalism, but said ANNISU-R students had been threatening her throughout the day, saying that the station blamed ANNISU-R for postponement of vote counting.

“The radio station had not aired any news that accused them of tearing the ballot papers,” she said while talking to a FNJ team led by Dharmendra Jha here. Amrita Anmol, a news section staffer, alleged that a gang — including Maoist leader Bamdev Chhetri — scolded her without any reason.

Meanwhile, the Kalikot chapter of the Federation of Nepali Journalists today decided to boycott the news related to Unified CPN-M, Rastriya Janamorcha, NWPP and their sister organisations.

An emergency meeting of the chapter this morning decided to boycott the news of the above mentioned parties until the fake allegations levelled by the parties against the journalists were not withdrawn.

A press release issued by the chapter stated the parties had accused journalists of involvement in vandalism in Tila Multiple Campus during FSU polls. The statement adds, “When we tried to seek their stance on the allegations, they tried to attack us.”

District headquarters Manma remained tense after the FSU poll was put off in the campus. Alleging that YCL attacked their activists with khukuris, ANNFSU and NSU have called an indefinite bandh. Talks were held to settle the problem, said CDO Pitambar Ghimire.

Source: The Himalayan Times, March 22, 2009)

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