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Keep people in centre while making law: experts

Published Date : November 8, 2023

Kathmandu, Nov 8: Former Chief Justice Kalyan Shrestha has said people must be kept in centre while formulating laws.

During an interaction organized by the Constitutional Watch Group and the Nepal Law Society on ‘Rule of law, transparency and participation’ here Monday, former chief justice Shrestha viewed the law is made for people, so it must cater justice to them.

“Country should foster the culture of adherence to law so that people could be ensured justice,” he said, adding that timely adjudication is equally important.

According to him, law should be made technology-friendly, but media trial on a case sub judice jeopardizes justice.

On the occasion, Supreme Court Justice Sapana Pradhan Malla seconded former CJ Shrestha that media trial had negatively impacted independent judiciary. She underscored the need to earn public trust to restore the image of judiciary.

All state organs can work by keeping in mind the balance of power. “We, judges, are aware to provide service in a convenient and prompt manner,” she reminded.

GBV cases down: Minister Alemagar

Dumre (Tanahu), Nov 8: Minister of Economic Affairs in Gandaki Province, Jit Prakash Alemagar, has viewed the cases of gender-based violence (GBV) have declined since the country adopted federal republic.

He argued that women’s ownership of land has helped make them self-dependent. Minister Alemagar made such observation during a meeting the National Women Commission organized with security agencies on how the GBV could be reduced.

“With the enforcement of new constitution, more financial rights are provided to the women. Gender stereotype has also waned,” he emphasized. Women’s growing participation in government and politics has also contributed to decrease violence against them, according to him.

On the occasion, NWC Chairperson Kamala Parajuli viewed women have involved actively in various fronts of society, which helps reduce violence against them. She sought cooperation from politics and society as a whole to establish women in society.

“NWC has received complaints that women faced inconvenience and were deprived of their rights after removing women development office from district following the adoption of federal republic,” she shared.

Chief of district coordination committee in Tanahu, Shanti Raman Wagle, stressed the need for making women independent from economic viewpoint so that they would build confidence. Women are facing violence even within home, he said, claiming that comparatively, Gandaki Province has recorded less number of GBV.

Chief District Officer Chhabi Lal Rijal said it is essential to realize and promote the religious and traditional value that respects women.

For women’s safety with lessening GBV, government needs to allocate additional budget, according to NWC member Krishna Kumari Paudel.

Karnali province govt distributes Rs 24.5 million to earthquake-hit local levels

Karnali, Nov 8: The Karnali province government has handed over Rs 24.5 million to the earthquake survivors from Jajarkot, Rukum Paschim and Salyan districts.

A total of 16 local levels from these districts were provided the monetary support.

Bheri and Nalgadh municipalities and Barekot rural municipalities of Jajarkot were given Rs 2.5 million each, while Kushe rural municipality Rs 2 million, Chhedgad municipality and Junichande rural municipality Rs 1 million each.

Government spokesperson and Minister for Internal Affairs and Law, Krishna Bahadur GC, shared this information. He added that Shivalaya rural municipality was provided half million rupees.

Similarly, in Rukum Paschim district, Athbiskot and Sanibheri municipalities got Rs 2.5 million each, while Chaurajahari and Triveni rural municipality Rs 2 million each. Musikot municipality got Rs 1 million and Banphikot rural municipality received half million rupees.

Darma rural municipality of Salyan was provided Rs 1.5 million and Bagchaur and Bangad Kupinde municipality each got half million rupees.

Jajarkot and Rukum Paschim suffered worst in the November 3 earthquake.

Chhetrapratap Memorial Literary Awards goes to Dr Lamsal

Damauli, Nov 8: The Gital Foundation Nepal and the Drama Forum Tanahu have decided to confer the Chhetra Pratap Memorial Award to litterateur and media person Dr Nawaraj Lamsal for this year.

The award carries the purse of Rs 25,000. Foundation’s Chairman Akash Adhikari informed that a prize selection committee had picked Dr Lamsal for the award.

Similarly, the Gital National Award-2080 will be provided to Tila Lekali (Morang). The prize carries the purse of Rs 10,000.

Shobha Singh Thakuri from Tanahu will be provided the Gital Talent Award, 2080.

The organizations have been providing the awards for six years. However, the distribution of the Chhetra Pratap Memorial Award had begun since last year.

Senior litterateur Dr Ram Prasad Gyawali was honoured with this award last year.

Quota in distribution of chemical fertilizer

Kanchanpur, Nov 8: The Shuklaphanta municipality has introduced quota for distribution of chemical fertilizer to the farmers.

With this, the farmers would be distributed the chemical fertilizer via cooperatives. Agriculture Inputs Company Ltd in the district has allocated 1,677 sacks (8,321 metric tons) of fertilizer to the municipality.

Chief administrative officer at municipality, Tikendra Raj Bhatta, informed that it would be easier to distribute chemical fertilizer via cooperative.

A total of 22 cooperatives will buy and supply fertilizers in the local level. The associated members of cooperation and number of farmers have been kept in account while determining distribution quota, according to Karan Singh Budhar Air, chief of agricultural development section. He added that the cooperatives with few members are provided less fertilizer.

However, one cooperation will get at least 125 to 154 sacks of chemical fertilizers.

The municipality records more use of DAP fertilizer than the determined quota. The farmers here are demanding 13,000 metric tons of chemical fertilizer (DAP) every year.

Due to short supply, farmers are bound to compromise with low quality fertilizer during cultivation.

UNESCO issues guideline on governance of digital platform, underscores FoE and multi-stakeholders approach

Kathmandu, Nov 8: In response to the surge of online dis- and misinformation, hate speech and conspiracies taking toll across the globe, the United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organization (UNESCO) has released a guideline on how the digital platforms could be governed by respecting human rights online.

Issuing a press statement on Monday, the UNESCO released a ‘Guidelines for the Governance of Digital Platforms’ with special focus on protection of freedom of expression and access to information and the adoption of multi-stakeholder approach.

“Digital technology has enabled immense progress on freedom of speech. But social media platforms have also accelerated and amplified the spread of false information and hate speech, posing major risks to societal cohesion, peace and stability. To protect access to information, we must regulate these platforms without delay, while at the same time protecting freedom of expression and human rights,” observed Audrey Azoulay, Director-General of UNESCO.

According to her, restriction of speech is an appalling measure. “Having media outlets and information tools that are independent, qualitative and free, is best long-term response to disinformation”, asserts the Director-General.

The guideline has aimed at cultivating an internet of trust, warranting attention and engagement from various stakeholders ranging from government to civil society, academia and technical community.

Importantly, the document has set principles and urged all sides for their true respect. The seven fundamental principles to be respected while governing digital platforms are- human rights and multi-stakeholders approach in decision-making; establishment of independent, public regulators; close coordination for wider network; feasible and effective content moderation; accountable and transparent platforms’ algorithms; platforms’ initiative to educate users; and stronger measures by regulators and platforms during sensitive moments like elections and crises.

The guideline was prepared after massive consultations, collecting over 10,000 comments from 134 countries. Inclusive participation was fostered in the worldwide consultations, thereby ensuring diverse voices.

As of September 2023, the number of people using social media has reached 4.75 billion across the globe.

In this connection, election related misinformation has been a severe concern. More than a dozen countries are holding election in 2024.

It is a coincidence that government bodies in Nepal including Cyber Bureau of Nepal Police held a discussion with international representatives of TikTok on November 3, seeking collaboration with TikTok Singapore Office so that the government would take measure to control ‘misuse of social media’.

A press statement released by the Home Ministry mentioned, “With this discussion, it has been easy to remove the contents on TikTok that breach social harmony; spread hatred; cast aspersion on dignitaries; jeopardize ethnic, religious, and social harmony; and indecent things, and to find and bring to book the people involved such activities.”

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