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Asian Tribune is published by E-LANKA MEDIA(PVT)Ltd. Vol. 20 No. 78

Journalists defy Nepal’s restrictive media ordinance

[b]Journalists defy Nepal’s restrictive media ordinance[/b]

[b]Khatmandu, 19 October, ( [/b]Nepalese journalists have defied the restrictive media ordinance announced by Nepal’s royalist government on October 9 by continuing to carry news and opinions critical of King Gyanendra and have called for nationwide defiance of the same from fellow journalists.

“There is no question of complying to an ordinance promulgated by an unconstitutional government,” said Kanak Mani Dixit, editor of Himal South Asia, talking in a ‘Face-to-Face, program in Kathmandu. “There is no option but to fight back through defiance,” Dixit said.

Dixit charged that the ordinance has been announced with the intention of consolidating autocratic rule in the country. He also said that the palace has no rights to change the laws passed by the parliament and that if the government wants to discipline the media, it should discipline the government media that is involved in yellow journalism.

Similarly, acting president of Federation of Nepalese Journalists (FNJ) Shiva Gaunle said that journalists have indeed decided to defy the ordinance. “We have already been defying it. The ordinance does not intend to discipline the media. It intends to consolidate the royal takeover of February 1,” he said.

Meanwhile, Nepal Bar Association has announced that it will ask Nepal’s Chief Justice to annul the ordinance, as it curtails the rights of the free press, as well as people’s rights to information, guaranteed in Nepal’s constitution, 1990.

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