With sheer disruption of economic activities in the wake of lockdown enforced to contain the COVID-19, the media here have been badly dented. Local FM radios, online news portals, televisions and newspapers have been facing huge crisis as they failed to get any advertisement.
There are 25 FM radios, 40 online news portals and four televisions, four daily newspapers and 14 weeklies. Although most of them were closed with the enforcement of the lockdown, they have now resumed but running without revenue.
Chairperson of Community Radio Broadcasters Association in Chitwan, Ramesh Poudel, informed that the radios have dearth of advertisement so they are unable to pay internet charge. They can not even take the bill to the advertisers. There are some 200 journalists and employees combined in the radio.
Owner of narayanionline.com, Krishna Acharya, said all online news portals are run for the self-employment. More than 100 journalists are associated with online media. But, renewal of online media is difficult for the lockdown.
Publisher of the Chitwan Post daily, Govinda Aryal, shared the plight that financial constraint has posed difficulty to buy plate and papers for the newspapers. More than 150 persons including journalists are associated with four dailies published from the district.
Moreover, publisher of Rajdhani Astha weekly, Nawaraj Dhakal, informed that no any sector had showed concern over the closure of weekly for two months. He complained that the local, State and federal governments failed to provide assistance to the local media.
Nepal Press Union Chairperson in Chitwan, Anil Dhakal, said if the State does not pay heed to mofussil media, they would be on the verge collapse.
Coordinator of Press Organization in Chitwan Prakash Mani Gyawali said both private sector and government should make efforts to save media in crisis.
Chitwan Chairperson of FNJ Radheshyam Khatiwada viewed that the local governments must provide advertisements to local media in a proportionate manner.
Source: National News Agency Nepal