Freedom of the Press



Freedom of the Press 2002

2002 Scores

Press Status

Partly Free

Press Freedom Score
(0 = best, 100 = worst)


Political Environment
(0 = best, 40 = worst)


Economic Environment
(0 = best, 30 = worst)


Frequent Maoist rebel violence and the slaughter of members of the royal family further tested journalism in Nepal in 2001. The government was accused of trying to impose unofficial censorship by detaining prominent editors and newspaper publishers. The government frequently arrested for short periods journalists accused of supporting the Maoists. Maoists also detained some journalists, and extracted "donations." Press freedom was said to be in a "fragile state." The Supreme Court in July cancelled the government's demand that private FM radio stations broadcast only news released by state-owned media. The government owns the only television station. The hundreds of independent newspapers have limited influence because of the low rate of literacy. After a state of emergency was declared in November, police raided newspapers and arrested journalists charged with associating with the Maoist movement. In December, 10 Maoist journalists were sent to a detention camp.