Nepali Media Made Simple: #1 Easy Guide To Nepal’s Press

Nepali media ling app

Nepal, a tiny nation nestled in the Himalayas, boasts a surprisingly diverse media landscape that. Nepali media plays a crucial role in shaping public opinion, promoting democratic values, and presenting aspects of this landlocked South Asian society to the world beyond its mountainous borders.

So, let’s take a look at the world of Nepali media, exploring its history, current challenges, and its impact on Nepali society.

A Quick History

The history of media in Nepal can be traced back to the first newspaper, the “Gorkhapatra,” which was published in 1901. Since then, the Nepali media landscape has evolved significantly, with a notable shift occurring in the 1950s when a handful of newspapers were published by pioneering journalists working in a transitional democracy and the early 1990s when Nepal transitioned from an absolute monarchy to a constitutional monarchy with a multi-party democracy. This transition in particular marked a turning point for media freedom in the country.

The 1990 Constitution Of Nepal

The restoration of democracy in 1990 brought with it a dramatic change in the rights and freedoms of the press. According to the new constitution:

“No news/articles shall be censored, provided that nothing shall prevent the making of laws to impose reasonable restrictions on any act which may undermine the sovereignty and integrity of the Kingdom, or which may jeopardize the harmonious relations subsisting among the peoples of various castes, tribes or communities; or on any act of sedition, defamation, contempt of court or incitement to an offence; or an any act which may be contrary to decent public behavior or morality.”

“No press shall be closed or seized for printing any news item, article or other reading material.”

Additionally:

“Every citizen shall have the right to demand and receive information on any matter of public importance: provided that nothing in this Article shall compel any person to provide information on any matter about which secrecy is to be maintained by law.” According to Article 16. 

The Maoist Insurgency

Unfortunately, a State of Emergency was declared between November 2001 and August 2002. During this time the security forces were alleged to have assassinated six journalists and the rebels another two. Many more were subjected to arrest and torture. Under the King’s Direct Rule, Nepali media was subjected to draconian government suppression.

Local newspapers were closed down and others were forced to censor any material referring to the Maoist Insurgency and security operations. News on the television and radio stations was strictly monitored and heavily censored causing several broadcasters to shut up shop.

Civil rights, freedom of movement, and the right to information largely disappeared and journalists faced arrest, detention, and interrogation.

Restoration Of Democracy

In 2006, the Nepali media played its part in the April Uprising and the restoration of democracy. However, even though the Comprehensive Peace Accord was signed by the Maoist CPN and the Nepali government, media workers didn’t experience a respite to press freedom violations and brutal attacks. Between 2006 and 2008, hundreds of media workers and journalists experienced threats and intimidation. Three journalists even lost their lives.

Challenges Faced By Nepali Media

Political Interference: One of the most significant challenges faced by Nepali media is political interference. Politicians and political parties often attempt to influence media outlets, for example not allowing anything to be published about the Maoist insurgency without first consulting the army, leading to biased reporting, a lack of impartiality, and a shackling of Nepali press freedom. This interference undermines the media’s role as a watchdog and erodes public trust.

Limited Resources: Many media outlets in Nepal operate with limited resources, making it challenging to produce high-quality journalism. This is particularly true in rural areas where access to funding and technology is limited. Fewer than 15 per cent of Nepalis have access to a television, the channels of which are either government-run or in the hands of private operators.

Safety Concerns: Journalists and other members of the press in Nepal often face threats to their safety, especially when reporting on sensitive issues such as corruption, organized crime, and political scandals. There have been instances of harassment, intimidation, and even violence against journalists.

Innovations In Nepali Media

To address some of the challenges it faces, the Nepali media landscape has witnessed several innovations and adaptations in recent years:

Online News Portals: The rise of the internet has led to the emergence of numerous web portals, like the Kathmandu Post which made its debut online in 1996, making mass communication more accessible to a wider audience. These platforms have also allowed for more interactive and multimedia reporting.

Citizen Journalism: With the proliferation of smartphones and social media, citizen journalism has gained prominence in Nepal. Ordinary citizens can now report news and events in real time, increasing transparency and accountability.

Media Sector Literacy Programs: Various organizations and NGOs have launched media literacy programs to educate the public about critical thinking, fact-checking, and discerning credible sources of information.

Some Simple Media Vocab

EnglishNepaliTransliteration
MediaमिडियाMidia
NewsसमाचारSamachar
Journalistपत्रकारPatrakar
TelevisionटेलिभिजनTelevision
RadioरेडियोRedio
Newspaperपत्रिकाPatrika
Magazineपत्रिकाPatrika
Broadcastingप्रसारणPrasaran
Internetइन्टरनेटInternet
Social Mediaसामाजिक मिडियाSamajik Midia
Podcastपडकास्टPodcast
Advertisementविज्ञापनBijnyapan
Interviewसाक्षात्कारSakshatkar
Pressप्रेसPress
Reporterरिपोर्टरReporter
Headlinesमुख्य समाचारMukhya Samachar
Public Relationsसार्वजनिक संचालनSarvajanik Sancharan
Broadcastप्रसारण गर्नुPrasaran Gar nu
Media Coverageमिडिया कवरेजMidia Kaverej

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Learning a new language like Nepali can seem a daunting task. Ling takes the pressure off by delivering bite-sized lessons created by native Nepali speakers. Ling apps finger tracing tool is also a great way to get to grips with the Nepali script. With more than 60 languages on offer, you will never need another language teaching app, so why not give Ling app a try at Google Play or the App Store?

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