LALITPUR, July 25: Dolindra Prasad Sharma, chairperson and general manager of Sajha Prakashan, has barred journalists from entering the state-owned 105 years old publication office located at Pulchowk, Lalitpur.
GM Sharma restricted two journalists-Bishnu Prasad Aryal and Bashant Khadka - of Nepal Republic Media from entering the office. The reporters had visited Sajha Prakashan on Tuesday for a follow-up of news reports on irregularities published by Republica and Nagarik dailies on Sunday.
The security guard assigned at the gate of the Sajha Prakashan did not allow the journalists to enter into the office.
“The GM has ordered us not to allow journalists to enter into the office,” said the guard.
Officials at Sajha Prakashan said that GM Sharma restricted the journalists to avoid questioning. “He wants to keep the realities of the publication confined within the walls of the publication,” they said.
However, Sharma said over the phone that he has not directed the guards to bar journalists from entering Sajha Prakashan.
“I have told them to register the names and details of the persons who come to the office,” he said.
When asked about restriction at Sajha Prakashan, Shanta Bahadur Shrestha, secretary at the Ministry of Education, said that anybody is allowed to go to a public organization. “It was wrong to bar journalists from entering into Sajha Prakashan,” he said. “We cannot expect such behavior from responsible authorities,” he added. “I will inquire about this issue and seek answers from Sajha Prakashan.”