IFJ Demands Action Over Abduction of Journalist in Nepal

The International Federation of Journalists (IFJ) joins its affiliate the Federation of Nepali Journalists (FNJ) in demanding an immediate government investigation into the abduction of journalist Keshav Bohara in Nepal’s mid-west on June 30.


Bohara had reportedly received death threats in recent weeks, in relation to his reporting for Mandavi Radio in the town of Tiram, Pyuthan district.


The FNJ reports that Bohara’s comments on May 27 about a Maoist cadre’s involvement in a land dispute and subsequent delays to a housing project had attracted threats from an unknown group.


Bohara then alerted his colleagues, local authorities, the Nepal Congress and Communist Party of Nepal officials about the threats and his concerns for his personal safety.


Immediately after his abduction, Bohara’s colleagues reported receiving a call from Bohara’s telephone in which his cries for help could be heard clearly.


A delegation from the FNJ’s Pyuthan chapter is collaborating with local police to investigate the whereabouts of Bohara. A mission team from the FNJ’s central committee is also investigating the case. 


“The abduction of Keshav Bohara is just the latest case of a political group in Nepal taking the law into their own hands,” IFJ Asia-Pacific Director Jacqueline Park said.


“The IFJ demands that Nepal’s authorities conduct a full and far-reaching investigation to ensure the prompt safe return of Bohara and to prosecute those responsible.”


Meanwhile, a member of the Youth Force affiliated to the Communist Party of Nepal-Unified Marxist Leninist (CPN-UML) vandalised the office of Janasamsad Daily in Jhapa, Terai district after the paper reported on the force’s alleged involvement in a criminal matter.


Youth Force central committee member Raju Karki is reported to have invaded the newspaper’s office and damaged the organisation’s furniture as retribution for the report.


The IFJ and the FNJ condemn such acts of intimidation, and call on the CPN-UML to direct all members and associates to respect the media’s right to report in the public interest.


Compensation should be paid for the damaged equipment, and the CPN-UML party administration should duly punish members who engage in such attacks on the media.


For further information contact IFJ Asia-Pacific on +612 9333 0919


The IFJ represents over 600,000 journalists in 125 countries worldwide