Incident Reports

Protesters obstruct newspaper delivery


Madhes, Saptari, Shambhunath

Samyukta Loktantrik Madheshi Morcha supporters have obstructed distribution of newspapers in six eastern Tarai districts. Kantipur Daily, The Kathmandu Post, Saptahik, Nagarik, Republica and Sukrabar, which are printed in Biratnagar, and Annapurna Post Daily printed in Itahari could not reach Saptari, Siraha, Dhanusha, Mahottari, Udayapur and Sindhuli districts. Demonstrators are engaged in vandalising and torching press vehicles carrying newspapers. They also warned distributors and drivers not to distribute the newspapers. As roads have been obstructed, Gorkhapatra, The Himalayan Times, Nepal Samacharpatra, Naya Patrika and Sourya Dainik, among others, could not be sent to the districts from the Capital. According to Loknath Dhakal, Eastern Regional chief of Kantipur Publications, they have not distributed newspapers in the area since August 19. “We stopped distribution after protesters vandalised our vehicles,” he said. Press vehicles are obstructed in Saptari following the death of Rajib Raut, a protester. Nagarik Daily’s regional chief Mahananda Sapkota said they protesters targeted their vehicles several times. Chairman of the Federation of Nepali Journalists, Mahendra Bista, said the obstruction is the blatant violation of press freedom. Various media organisations have requested the struggling groups not to obstruct newspaper distribution. Similarly, in Kapilvastu, Samyukta Loktantrik Madheshi Morcha cadres torched a truck (Lu 1Kha 7502) at Shivaraj Municipality-2 along the East-West Highway on Friday night. Due to the ongoing strike, people in district headquarters Taulihawa and surrounding villages are facing the shortage of cooking gas. Our correspondent in Bhojpur said 33 parties, including Sanghiya Samajbadi Forum and CPN-Maoist, as well as Nepal Federation of Indigenous Nationalities demanded that Nepal Army soldiers be returned from Tarai districts. Likewise, Tharu people in Bharatpur have been demanding that the Chitwan be declared the provincial capital. Meanwhile, the ongoing strike has affected Rakshyabandan festival in Saptari. People could not travel from one place to another due to the strike.
Details and Impacts
Violent / Non-violent Nonviolent
Primary Form Program Interference/Obstruction
Primary Cause Issues related to freedom of expression and civil rights
Actor 1 - Number of people n/a
Actor 1 - Affiliations Madhes-based Parties
Actor 1 - Youth na
Actor 2 - Number of people n/a
Actor 2 - Affiliation (Target) Journalist/Media
Actor 2 - Youth na
National/Online Media