Victim of political vicissitudes
In late 2017, the first local, provincial and parliamentary elections in 20 years were marked by many violations of the freedom to inform. Journalists were arrested without a warrant and some were mistreated in detention. Others were the victims of physical violence by party activists and politicians. The government that was formed with K.P. Oli as prime minister in February 2018 clearly needed to take steps to ensure respect for the “full freedom of the press” enshrined in the preamble of Nepal’s 2015 constitution. But the new criminal code adopted in August 2018 poses major new threats to press freedom because several of its provisions hamper investigative reporting and restrict criticism of public figures. Another disturbing development was the anti-media rhetoric which government representatives began using and which was widely reproduced in the government’s newspapers, radio stations and TV channels. With the threat of prosecution and continuing violence in the field, the environment for journalists working for independent media outlets is extremely difficult.
106 in 2018
32.05 in 2018