A leading Nepalese media body on Friday condemned the government's move to impose 'restrictions' on the issuance of identity cards to members of the press and urged it to immediately rescind the directives that are against the press freedom guaranteed by the Constitution. In a circular dated February 1 this year, the Nepal Government made it mandatory for journalists and other staff of media organisations to produce their bank details, including the statement, to avail facilities, such as the issuance of press identity cards.
It also asked media houses to submit a copy of the payroll of all journalists and other staff authenticated by banks for availing services from the Information and Broadcasting department. The Nepal Media Society has urged the KP Oli -led Government to immediately revoke the anti-media directives.
"This regulation is linked to the secrecy of journalists, which needs to be corrected," Shubha Shanker Kandel, president of the society, said. "Let us remind you none of the government's anti-press activities will shut down our media. The entire world and Nepali people will stand in support of the Nepali media. There are innumerable examples in front of us how moves against the media by those drunk on power have backfired," he added.
(With inputs from agencies.)