Thursday Aug 11, 2022
Thursday Aug 11, 2022

Communication law is not brought to control media: Minister Karki

2022 Mar 09, 18:24, Kathmandu
This image shows spokesperson for the government and Minister for Law, Justice and Parliamentary Affairs Gyanendra Bahadur Karki.

Minister for Communications and Information Technology Gyanendra Bahadur Karki has clarified that the law on communication has been brought to impose autocracy on the freedom of press and expression and not to control the media but to regulate it.

 Regarding the letter of attention submitted by the Federation of Nepali Journalists (FNJ) today on the impact of COVID-19 and the law on mass media in the field of journalism, government spokesperson Karki clarified that the government is committed to press freedom and rule of law. He assured that the government would move ahead for the development of press freedom and journalism by holding discussions with the stakeholders. Minister Karki said that a 'Journalist Scholarship Fund' has been set up for the honor of senior journalists.

 FNCCI President Bipul Pokhrel said that the National Broadcasting (Eleventh Amendment) Rules, 2078 BS has created some ambiguity and it is necessary to clarify it further. He said that various media related laws made by the previous government without the participation of stakeholders had anti-press freedom provisions and urged to rectify them.

 Senior Vice President Ramesh Bista said that small investment media has been greatly affected during COVID-19 and urged for providing concessional loans. Stating that there is a delay in drafting the law on communication as per the provisions of the new constitution, he urged to formulate the law after discussing with the stakeholders.

 "As FNJ has expressed its interest and concern over some issues of the 11th amendment 2078 of the recently issued National Broadcasting Rules, it demands immediate address," the letter said. The federation has also demanded that steps be taken for the release of journalist Umakanta Pandey, who was arrested in the UAE.

 Thakur Belbase, a member of the Press Council Nepal, said that discussions are underway with stakeholders regarding regulation of new media. Although the budget addresses the issue of providing public welfare advertisements to online media, the federation says that it should be implemented immediately as there are problems in its implementation.


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