-  Saturday 15 August 2020
     

    Maoist unionists block newspaper distribution

     -  The Kathmandu Post

    July 22 2007  - Maoist-affiliated trade union workers disrupted the distribution of two broadsheet dailies -The Himalayan Times and Annapurna Post, Saturday.
    Because of obstruction by cycle boys who distribute the newspapers from various drop points, the dailies could not hit the news stands today. In their bid to stop the papers from reaching the readers, the protesting cycle boys had even threatened 'physical' action against those defiantly going ahead with the distribution. Workers have been obstructing distribution for the last three days.

    According to the management of the publishing house - International Media Network Nepal Private Limited (IMNNPL) - , the agitating cycle boys who belong to nine distribution agencies including R B News and are not IMNNPL employees, have been demanding that they be appointment directly by the publishing house. IMNNPL management awarded contracts to these agencies for the newspaper distribution.

    Issuing a press statement, IMNNPL said the Maoist-affiliated trade union unilaterally and illogically demanding permanent employment status is a mockery of the labor laws of the country. "We conclude that this demand for making delivery boys employees of the publishing house goes beyond legal parameters," the statement said.

    IMNNPL in its statement alleged that senior Maoist leaders were directly condoning the attack on free press. "The government has proved to be powerless to protect the rights and independence of journalists," it added.

    The growing incidence of obstruction of the independent press by Maoist sister organizations has drawn flak from various quarters.

    Issuing a press statement, the Federation of Nepalese Journalists (FNJ) said it objects to the obstruction posed by the Maoist workers. Recently, the Maoist-affiliated union of a private distribution agency that distributed the papers of the Kamana Group forced the publishing house to suspend publication of its Nepal Samacharpatra daily and Mahanagar, an eveninger, for a few days, demanding similar changes in employment.

    Likewise, the Press Council Nepal 'regrets' the interference with press freedom at The Himalayan Times and Annapurna Post. It has also urged the Maoists not to adopt undemocratic ways of protest but to resolve the problem by means of dialogue.

    Similarly, issuing a separate statement, the Advertising Association of Nepal (AAN) denounced the disruption of regular newspaper distribution.

    Source : The Kathmandu Post
    © FRANCE NEPAL info

    Other articles by reporter The Kathmandu Post




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