Journos’ trip cut short due to trouble on Arniko Highway

Sindhupalchowk, Dec 22:

A team of mediapersons, including Federation of Nepali Journalists (FNJ) president Dharmendra Jha, heading Jiri, was obstructed today in Andheri on the Arniko Highway by ex-police personnel who were demanding their reinstatement.

President Jha, along with Reporters’ Club president Rishi Dhamala and former president of the Kavre chapter of FNJ Ishwori Ojha, who were heading to Jiri to take part in a programme of South Asian Free Media Association (SAFMA), were obstructed on the highway this morning. The journos later headed to Sindhupalchowk district headquarters Chautara. Prime Minister Pushpa Kamal Dahal ‘Prachanda’ addressed the SAFMA gathering.

The police personnel, who were forced to desert their service during the insurgency, have been obstructing vehicular movement in the Arniko Highway demanding their reinstatement.

Upon their arrival in Chautara, the journalists said they were intercepted by the agitating ex-security personnel who later turned aggressive after knowing that they were journalists.

They held up the journalists for more than an hour and returned them.

“We were sent back on foot to walk for almost three kilometres,” Jha said, adding, “It was pre-planned.”

Earlier, Balefi police post and traffic police at Andheri had tried to convince the journos’ team to abandon their journey.