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Journalist threatened after publishing story about school fees, another assaulted

(Freedom Forum/IFEX) - On 11 July 2012, a reporter for the daily Nayapatrika, Raj Kumar Gole, received a death threat relating to a story he wrote about school fees in Kavre, a district that adjoins the Kathmandu Valley.

Talking to Freedom Forum's Media Monitoring Desk, Gole said an individual named Pradip Lama threatened him in a telephone call, saying, "Why did you write about the school fee? I'll break your hand and kill you if you continue writing news about schools."

Gole said he was threatened after he published a story about the exorbitant fees that private schools are imposing on parents, in violation of certain rules.

Journalists in Nepal have been threatened and attacked by various individuals and groups for merely exposing malpractices in various sectors, including education.

Freedom Forum condemns the incident and strongly urges the local authorities to take action against Lama and remain vigilant to prevent a possible attack on Gole.

In a separate incident, a reporter named Saurab Giri, who works for Bageshwori FM in Nepalgunj, a city in the mid-western area of Nepal's southern plain, was attacked by an unidentified group of people on 17 July.

Giri told Freedom Forum's Media Monitoring Desk that he was attacked when he was on his way to the Bageshwori FM office. He added that he managed to escape with no injuries.

Giri also works as a reporter for the local Nepalgunj Parivesh daily. It is worth mentioning, that he was previously attacked on 29 April 2011 and received a death threat on 8 March of that year. Giri said the 2011 threat and attack were related to information he published about an armed underground group active in the southern plain area.

Freedom Forum condemns the attack and strongly urges the local authorities to provide Giri with protection. The organisation also calls on the authorities to identify and bring the attackers to justice.

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