Report on one day program
Creating Awareness among
the Media persons on Constituent Assembly
Organised by Nepal Press Union
4 March 2008
A one day workshop was conducted by Nepal
Press Union Central Committee on the 11th Chaitra 2064(4th March
2008) at Committee's Central office's Hall at Kathmandu. The program
was supported by Friedrich-Ebert-Stiftung, Nepal Office.
Objectives of the program
Followings were major objectives of the program:
- To create awareness in relation with constitutional
Assembly among journalists
- To ensure role of journalists in the all
process of Constituent Assembly
Followings Outcomes were expected from the
- Awareness among journalist on Constituent
- Role of journalist and individual who support
the issue in CA process as voter, candidates and elected member
and social interpreter.
The participants of the program were the journalists'
representative from various media houses.
The program was divided into two sessions.
The first session was Inauguration and introductory session
and second session was Paper presentation and discussion on
CA. The moderator of the program was Mr. Shiva Lamsal, Secretary
of Nepal Press Union, Central committee and the Chairperson
of the first session was Mr. Shamirjung Saha, Chairperson of
The Nepal Press Union Central Committee.
In the starting of the program Mr. Damodar
Pr. Dawadi, vice president of Nepal Press Union, Central Committee
welcomed to all participants for their valuable time and deep
concern on this issue. He further thanked to the Chief Guest
of the program Mr. Prakashman Shingh, Leader Nepali Congress
other guests and paper presentator and all participants of the
Remarks from Guests:
Mr. Prakashman Singh, Vice- president,
Nepali Congress: First of all Mr. Singh thanked to the
organizer for this valuable program and he said that we have
got an opportunity to get back the lost rights in 2007 B. S.
he further said that in the past, the election of Constitution
Assembly could not be held because of the king. The nation lagged
57 years behind. The media should, thus, create a people's mandate
for CA. The democratic alliance should make the new constitution
for making it democratic. People should cast votes in the leadership
of Nepali Congress. Congress has solved Maoist rebellion and
Terai movement. It is also necessary that the news be published
by communication media for creating public awareness about the
firstly introduced electronic voting machine in Nepal. At last
he requested to the journalist to play vital role for Making
CA Election successful.
Dr. Prakash Sharan Mahat, Center Committee
Member, Nepali Congress: He also thanked to the organizer
and said that media should play vital role for making CA successful
as it played the role in people's movement. The media should
invigilate actively for making election free and fair. It is
the duty of government and political parties to create an environment
to the voters for casting their votes safely and it is the duty
of media people to caution them. The democratic candidates should
be elected for making democratic constitution. Such a democratic
front is Nepali Congress. However, there must be representation
of all parties and all factions of society in CA. For creating
such an environment is the job of media people.
Mr. Harihar Birahi, Senior Journalist:
Mr. Birahi said that CA is an opportunity for liberation of
all Nepali. CA should be taken for developing democratic norms
rather than for acquiring power. Nowadays, taking advantage
of transitional period, even ultra rightists are looking so
democratic and criminals who killed journalists are looking
great freedom seekers for the press.
Bishnu Nisthuri, President of Federation
of Nepalese Journalist: He said, CA is going to be assembled
for managing movement. CA is a test for communication media
too. It will be clear through their role that how professional
they will be in CA election. Everyone should achieve victory
in CA through democratic constitution. The federation of journalists
also is going to monitor during CA election period. The press
council is also active to monitor the role of communication
media in this regard. The result of the monitoring will be published
right after the CA election.
Mr. Samir Jung Shah, President of Nepal
Press Union, Central Committee: From the Chair desk
he said that it is time for the journalists to play the role
of watchdog for CA election. The communication media has to
play special role in CA election by conserving professionalism
and press freedom.
Mr. Kashiraj Dahal: Chairperson of Administrative
Court: Mr. Dahal made his presentation paper on creating
awareness on CA and Role of JMedia People. He said that CA is
going to be held for validating the prevailing liquid political
situation of the country. Media has to play an important role
in deriving constitution, ruling system, federalism etc while
framing new constitution. Particularly, the media should monitor
and invigilate whether the CA is for people and nation or not.
While executing federalism there should not be conflict among
the states for allocating natural resources. The major conflict
that appears among the states is to divide the natural resources.
For deriving democratic constitution, campaigning is necessary.
In case democratic constitution is not formulated, even the
fourth organ of the state may lose the rights for freedom of
He further said that it is convenient to make
constitution after the election of CA provided there is political
consensus about the fundamental contents of new constitution.
There must be political consensus about how many states there
will be and how the states will be divided.
Mr. Devraj Dahal, Country Head, FES:
Mr. Dahal made his presentation on State's restructuring and
role of Media people. He stressed that the main aim of CA should
be to install people based democracy, inclusive structure of
states and sustainable peace. The states should not be divided
on the basis of race, region and class. While dividing states
in federal system, civic states should be made. As per the manifesto
prepared by some political parties in CA election, it is felt
that new constitution will be of socialist structure.
He further said regarding the media people
role on CA election that the communication media should give
priority to civic education for making people aware on constitution
assembly. There is always conflict between democracy and constitutionalism.
Democracy advocates freedom. On the other hand, constitutionalism
insists on the point that every activity should be within the
After the paper presentation by resource persons
a hot discussion was held. Participants were actively participated
for that session.
Ms. Radha Chalise: At beginning
of her comment she briefed on the how media people can play
active role on CA election and further said that Communication
media should go ahead by clarifying what CA should do. No discussion
has been made about the constitution to be framed after CA election.
The discussion was necessary about how to make the election
of CA participatory. The media should take seriously about how
to maintain the increasing trend of people's trust towards it.
Mr. Shiv Lamsal: He made his
short comment on the role of communication media that should
be clear before CA election. The discussion is required for
the rights of communication media in constitution after CA.
Mr. Santosh Subedi: There is
no awareness in local level about CA. The rural people have
not been clear about CA. It is found that the candidates have
been campaigning the CA election by considering it to be regular
Mr. Bal Krishna Adhikari: Whether
the parliament can amend the constitution made by CA or not?
If it can be amended what is the rationale of CA election? He
again raised the question what points can be changed while amendment
if any? He requested to the resources person to answer all his
Mr. Khila Karki: What should
be the ruling system? How should be the federalism? It is said
that political consensus is required to decide about them. He
raised the question that if all the issues of CA are settled
through political consensus before CA election why to elect
Mr. Mahendra Shrestha: Even
the candidates are not clear about constitution assembly. They
have considered it to acquisition of power to reach to the government.
After the Discussion and comments from participants
the resource persons answered to all the question's of participants.
At the end of the program Mr. Samirjung saha, Chairperson of
the program again thanked to chief guest, guest, Resource persons
and all participants for their active participation on the program
and he announced the end of the program.