KATHMANDU: The fifth plenum of Federation of Nepali Journalists (FNJ), the umbrella organisation of journalists, has decided to demand that the government increase the existing minimum salary of journalists working for national-level media.

The minimum monthly salary of journalists associated with national-level media is Rs 10,008 as per the decision of the Ministry of Information and Communications.

This amount was fixed on the recommendation of the  Minimum Wages Fixation Committee in 2012.

The plenum which was chaired by FNJ president Mahendra Bista and held in Sindhupalchowk yesterday, said the minimum monthly salary of journalists should be reviewed periodically and increased to Rs 20,000 on the basis of inflation.

“The meeting decided to entrust the FNJ Secretariat with the responsibility of holding talks with stakeholders regarding increment of minimum salary,” a press statement issued by FNJ said today.

FNJ has also decided to draw the government’s attention towards putting into action its commitment to provide accident insurance to journalists and establish a Conflict Victim Journalists’ Welfare Find as well as a Mass Communication Training Academy as announced through the budget speech for the current fiscal.

“It is unfortunate that the government has delayed fulfilling these commitments even though the current fiscal year is almost over,” FNJ said.

FNJ will be launching a new phase of campaign to make the implementation of the Working Journalists Act, 1993, more effective.

The Working Journalists Act Implementation Monitoring Committee has been tasked to convince media houses across the country to provide letters of appointment, ensure payment of minimum monthly salary and pay up outstanding salary to the working journalists.

The Committee will coordinate with FNJ chapters of the concerned media houses to hold talks with the management as and when necessary.