New article on UWB and D Wagle in UCLA’s Asia Media: Between activism and journalism
By Deepak Adhikari
Eating and sleeping in the office because of curfew. Journalist/blogger Deepak (clad in sweater) having lunch at Kantipur Publication canteen with his colleagues. Journalists spent night in the office fearing that they would be deprived of reporting for the paper because of limited curfew pass provided by the authorities.
As the state imposed 18 hour curfew starting from 2 AM yesterday to 8 PM today, I decided to stay at office, for the authorities have not provided curfew pass to any media. After chatting over phones, sharing the anxieties with my colleagues, I finally hit the sack at midnight. In the morning, when I woke up, the sunbeam had entered the office chamber. I was wondering, recalling that morning shows the day axiom, what this glowing sun has in store for a country in the throes of transformation.
We headed for nearby teashop. Few people around were reading Kantipur Daily. Kantipur is finally published (it is reduced to 8 pages) amidst the hassles, but the paper could not be distributed due to unavailability of curfew pass. One of my friends called me up to inquire about this. I mentioned him the headlines: Jhapa Ma Senadwara Andhadhunda Goli (Indiscriminate Firing in Jhapa By Army), Eighteen Hour Curfew, Parties will Defy etc. He was not satisfied and told me he had a habit of sipping his morning cup of tea with Kantipur. There are many more like him.
An army truck full of armymen is stationed just outside the gate of Kantipur Complex. A friend has just arrived from Patan through the alleys. He says people are walking in the residential areas. But, in the main roads, pedestrians are not seen. Curfew passes are not given to the international media as well.
Another friend of mine told me that yesterday king was about to dissolve his government and appoint Krishna Prasad Bhattarai as another PM. And, that was his way of agreeing to parties’ demands. But, in the evening, it seems he changed his mind and decided to prolong his rule as long as he can. Yesterday, the state used SMS to circulate anti-movement message. It asked people not to participate in SPA’s movement. At this moment, tranquility is reigning supreme. But, this must be the calm before the storm.