IFJ concerned over CJ Parajuli’s order against Kantipur on contempt of court caseThe International Federation of Journalists (IFJ) has expressed serious concern over the interim order issued by the Supreme Court of Nepal against Kantipur Daily on contempt of court case.
The International Federation of Journalists (IFJ) has expressed serious concern over the interim order issued by the Supreme Court of Nepal against Kantipur Daily on contempt of court case.
In a statement on Tuesday, IFJ General Secretary Anthony Bellanger said: “The IFJ is concerned by the interim order issued by the Supreme Court in the court case involving Kantipur Daily. A ban on the publication of news amounts to censorship, which is unacceptable in a democracy.”
Stating that a press council must work independently and should not be dictated its activities by the judicial power, the IFJ urged the Supreme Court of Nepal to set aside the interim order and respect the principles of fundamental press freedom while issuing further orders related to media.
The Supreme Court on 25th February had ordered the country’s Press Council to ban on publishing the news criticising Chief Justice Gopal Parajuli.
IFJ, Federation of Nepali Journalists (FNJ) and Nepal Press Union (NPU) also jointly expressed their concern over the ruling, recalling the need for the judiciary to respect fundamental principles of press freedom.
Kantipur Daily published a series of articles about discrepancies in the date of birth of Nepal’s Chief Justice Gopal Parajuli.
An advocate filed a contempt of court case against Kantipur, claiming that the articles caused controversy and dishonored CJ Parajuli.
CJ Parajuli heard the case –despite the issue being about him- and entered an interim order on 25 February, calling on the Press Council of Nepal (PCN) to probe news reports published by Kantipur Daily mentioning discrepancies about his birth date in official documents.
The order asked PCN to investigate if the news violated journalists’ code of conduct and to ensure that no news criticising the CJ is published again.