KATHMANDU: CPN-UML Chairman Jhala Nath Khanal said that his party has been shocked by the “planned attack” on the press during the general strike imposed by the Nepal Federation of Indigenous Nationalities (NEFIN) for two days.
Issuing a statement on Monday, Khanal condemned the assault on and misbehaviour with the media personnel, vandalism and arson of their paraphernalia and vehicles, and threat issued by the NEFIN leaders to the office-bearers of Federation of Nepali Journalists--the umbrella organisation of journalists.
"These types of attacks and threats dwarf the black days during the climax of armed conflict and royal regime, and are shameful and deplorable,” he stated, adding that these are disrupting the social harmony in the country.
He further took exception to the recent vandalism of property of Nepali Congress and CPN-UML leaders for the stance the latter took on federalism but the agitators did not find in their favour, and the communities who did not agree with them.
Mentioning that the ambulances, vehicles of rights activists and tourists and the caretakers of patients have been attacked, Khanal urged the bandh callers to stop such activities.
He criticised the government for being a mute spectator when such incidents happened in a series. Demanding compensation for the properties destroyed during the bandh yesterday and today, Khanal urged the government to provide security to the physical property of media personnel and safeguard the press freedom.
He further asked all the stakeholders to maintain restraint, be wise and committed to the social harmony and national unity.