Nepal Resumes Airing All Indian News Channels After Ban For 'hurting Country's Sentiments'
Almost after a month of accusing them and then imposing a ban for "hurting the country's national sentiment", the Nepal government on Sunday started airing all Indian news channels in the country. Issuing a statement, Sudeep Acharya, Managing Director, Dish Home, Nepal, said that Nepal has started airing all Indian news channels which were banned earlier.
'We have started airing all Indian news channels'
Nepal on July 9 stopped the transmission of all Indian private news channels except Doordarshan, accusing them of airing reports hurting the country's national sentiment. In a statement, Nepal government spokesperson Yuvaraj Khatiwada had urged all not to disseminate news that infringes sovereignty and self-respect of Nepalis.
'Reports hurting Nepal's national sentiment'
People familiar with the development said the Nepalese embassy in New Delhi apprised its views to the Indian government over coverage of Nepal's political developments by the Indian channels.
"We have stopped the distribution of all Indian news channels except Doordarshan," Dinesh Subedi, the chairman of Multi-System Operator (MSO), foreign channel distributor had said. "We have halted distribution of India's private news channels as they have aired news reports hurting Nepal's national sentiment," he added.
The development came after some Indian channels aired reports critical of Prime Minister K P Sharma Oli and his government. However, the Nepal government did not officially announce halting the telecast of the Indian news channels.
India-Nepal ties under strain
The India-Nepal bilateral ties came under strain after Defence Minister Rajnath Singh inaugurated an 80-km-long strategically crucial road connecting the Lipulekh pass with Dharchula in Uttarakhand on May 8. Nepal reacted sharply to the inauguration of the road claiming that it passed through Nepalese territory. India rejected the claim asserting that the road lies completely within its territory.
Later, Nepal updated the country's political map through a Constitutional amendment, incorporating three strategically important Indian areas. India termed as "untenable" the "artificial enlargement" of the territorial claims by Nepal. India has handed over a diplomatic note to Nepal over the map issue, Nepalese media reports said. The strained ties are said to have as much to do with political compulsions of Nepal PM Oli and instability within his own party as with any real issues between the two countries.
(With agency inputs)