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Nepal: Kanak Mani Dixit, Prominent journalist and public figure detained - Statements by Federation of Nepali Journalists and by Himal SouthAsian

22 April 2016

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[22 April 2016]

Press statement by Federation of Nepalese Journalists (Himalmedia Chapter)

CIAA’s Vengeful Act

Himalmedia co-publisher Kanak Mani Dixit was detained on Friday afternoon from near his office in Patan Dhoka in Kathmandu on the direct orders of the Chairman of the Commission to Investigate the Abuse of Authority (CIAA).

There are several indications that this was a deliberately vengeful act by the Chairman against Mr Dixit:

He was detained on Friday just before the courts closed to prevent being
freed on bail. He is locked up in a common jail cell for petty criminals at Gaushala Police Circle He was put in the cell despite having elevated blood pressure of 190/90 He has been kept in a jail cell and not the CIAA’s own detention centre

Mr Dixit had been critical in his regular columns about the appointment of Mr Lok Man Singh Karki to head the CIAA three years ago, for which the high-level Rayamajhi Commission had accused him of being involved as
Chief Secretary in crackdowns on pro-democracy protesters in the last days of King Gyanendra rule exactly 10 years ago. Mr Dixit and other pro- democracy activists had also been detained for two weeks by the royal regime at that time.

Mr Dixit was mentioned in a list put out by the CIAA in November of individuals it said were ‘under investigation for amassing disproportionate wealth’. Earlier this month, he was asked to present himself at the CIAA to which Mr Dixit had replied on Wednesday that the CIAA didn’t have jurisdiction to issue such an order, and that it went against the spirit of a Supreme Court decision in November that questioning the basis on which the accusations of financial irregularities were made against him.

We condemn this action taken by the CIAA against a journalist, a pro- democracy and human rights activist. He is being detained in inhuman conditions, and we demand an immediate end to his physical and psychological harassment. Mr Dixit should be released unconditionally forthwith.

Federation of Nepalese Journalists (Himalmedia Chapter)

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Announcement on Himal SouthAsian Website:

Founding editor Dixit in custody of CIAA

By The Editors

22 April 2016

Himal Southasian’s founding editor and the Chairman of The Southasia Trust Kanak Mani Dixit has been taken in for questioning by the authorities of the CIAA (Commission for Investigation into the Abuse of Authority).

While the CIAA’s investigations are related to Mr Dixit’s role in the Sajha Yatayat, a cooperative bus service, we in Himal Southasian have full faith in our leadership and in the due process of law.