Nepali Times

Filmmakers demand Dixit’s release

Friday, April 29th, 2016

free_kanak_poster(1)More than 100 film makers, academics, journalists and artists from India have demanded the immediate release of Himalmedia co-publisher Kanak Mani Dixit.

In a petition to Prime Minister KP Oli on Friday, they said ‘they had looked at the background to Dixit’s arrest’ and ‘the Commission for Investigation of Abuse of Authority (CIAA) Chief Lok Man Singh Karki has been running a personal vendetta because Dixit had protested his appointment in 2013 on the grounds that Karki had been indicted by the Rayamajhi  Commission for suppressing the people’s movement’.

The petition stated: ‘Nepal should be proud of Dixit instead of putting him in jail’.

Dixit was arrested by the anti-graft body on last Friday on the charge of ‘amassing disproportionate wealth’ by ‘abusing his power as the Chair of Sajha Yatayat’.

But the Himalmedia chapter of the Federation of Nepalese Journalists (FNJ) has said that Dixit is clean and his arrest is ‘an act of vengeance’ by the CIAA. The Supreme Court has already ordered the CIAA to explain in writing why he was detained.

The International Federation of Journalists (IFJ), the Committee to Protect Journalists (CPJ) and World Association of Newspapers and News Publishers (WAN) have already condemned Dixit’s arrest. In Nepal, the FNJ and the Nepal Press Union have also demanded Dixit’s release.

Here is the full text of petition signed by 112 film makers, academics, journalists and artists from India for Dixit’s release


Shri Khadga Prasad Sharma Oli
Prime Minister, Nepal
Subject: Petition for the Immediate Release of Kanak Mani Dixit

Dear Sir,

We, film makers, writers, academics and artists from India, are shocked and dismayed at the news of Shri. Kanak Mani Dixit’s arrest in Kathmandu. Kanak Mani Dixit is a much loved and admired figure in media and cultural spheres across South Asia. At a time when conflict and nationalist rhetoric is tearing apart the myriad ways in which we share a cultural past and present, he has tirelessly strived to forge bonds of friendship and peace in South Asia. Through his writings and other initiatives like HIMAL and Film South Asia, Kanak Mani Dixit has enthused people from across the region to imagine and work towards a peaceful, safe and ecologically sane South Asia. Today this man who Nepal and other South Asians should be proud of is being treated as a common criminal, put under detention as punishment.

We have looked at the background to his arrest and it seems fairly clear that the intention is to harass and intimidate rather than investigate alleged corruption charges. It is ironical that the arrest has been made at the behest of an agency called – Commission for Investigation of Abuse of Authority. Mr. Lokman Singh Karki as Chairman of this Authority has been running a personal vendetta because Mr. Dixit had protested his appointment in 2013 on the grounds that Mr. Karki had been indicted by the Rayamajhi Commission for suppressing the people’s movement, which led to the end of monarchy in Nepal. If at all, it is Mr. Karki himself who should be under investigation for abuse of authority now and during the people’s movement.

We demand the immediate release of Kanak Mani Dixit.

Yours Sincerely,
1. Aditya Seth | Film maker
2. Amar Kanwar | Film maker
3. Amit Mahanti | Film maker
4. Ammu Joseph | Journalist/Author
5. Amudhan R P. | Film maker
6. Anand Patwardhan | Film maker
7. Ananya Chakraborti | Film maker
8. Anjali Monteiro | Film Maker & Academic
9. Anjum Rajabali | Screenwriter & Professor
10. Ann Ninan | Journalist
11. Anupama Srinivasan | Filmmaker
12. Arvind Sinha. Film Maker.
13. Ashavari Majumdar | Performer
14. Avijit Mukul Kishore | Filmmaker
15. Benny Benedict | Film Activist
16. Biju Toppo | Filmmaker
17. Bina Sarkar Ellias | Editor/Publisher/Poet/Curator
18. Bishakha Datta Filmmaker
19. Chandita Mukherjee | Filmmaker
20. Chayanika Shah |Researcher and Visiting Faculty, Tata Institute of Social Science
21. Darryl D’Monte | Journalist
22. Deepa Dhanraj | Film maker
23. Deepak Mehta | Professor in Sociology, Shiv Nadar University
24. Faiza | Film maker
25. Farhana Ibrahim | Associate Professor of Sociology, IIT Delhi.
26. G. Arunima | Professor and Chair Centre for Women's Studies, School of Social Sciences, Jawaharlal Nehru University
27. Gautam Sonti | Filmmaker
28. Geeta Kapur | Critic and curator
29. Hartman de Souza | Theatre activist, writer, teacher
30. Iffat Fatima | Film maker
31. Ilina Sen | Academic
32. Inder Salim | Performance artist
33. Iram Ghufran| Filmmaker
34. Irene Dhar Malik | Film Editor
35. Jabeen Merchant | Film Editor
36. Janaki Abraham | Associate Professor, Delhi University
37. Janaky Sreedharan I Academic
38. Jatin Desai, Journalist
39. Jayasankar K P | Film Maker & Academic
40. Jerry Pinto | Writer
41. K.P. Sasi | Film Maker
42. Kavita Bahl | Film Maker
43. Kavita Joshi | Filmmaker and Media Trainer
44. Lalit Vachani | Filmmaker and Research Scholar, University of Göttingen, Germany
45. Lawrence Liang | Lawyer and legal researcher
46. Madhusree Dutta | Film Maker
47. Mahadeb Shi | Film Maker
48. Meena Menon | Journalist
49. Meghnath | Film Maker
50. Merajur Rahman Baruah | Film Maker
51. Miriam Chandy Menacherry | Film Maker
52. Mohan Rao | Professor, Jawaharlal Nehru University
53. Meenakshi Shedde | Journalist
54. Mukul Mangalik | Associate Professor of History, Ramjas College, University of Delhi
55. Nakul Singh Sawhney | Film Maker
56. Nandan Saxena | Film Maker
57. Nandita Das | Actor, film Maker
58. Navroze Contractor | Cinematographer
59. Neelima Sharma | Theatre person
60. Nikhil Titus | Film Maker & Academic
61. Nishtha Jain | Film Maker
62. Nivedita Menon, Professor, JNU, India
63. Padmini Ray Murray | Academic
64. Pamela Philipose I Journalist
65. Pankaj Butalia | Film Maker
66. Paromita Vohra | Film Maker
67. Parvez Imam | Arts practitioner / Filmmaker
68. Prabhu Mohapatra | Associate Professor , Department of History, Delhi University
69. Probal Dasgupta | Academic
70. Rahul Roy | Film Maker
71. Rafeeq Elias | Film Maker
72. Rakhi Sehgal | Researcher
73. Ram Puniyani | Writer
74. Ranjani Mazumdar | Professor, School of Arts and Aesthetics, Jawaharlal Nehru University
75. Ranu Ghosh | Film Maker, Cinematographer
76. Reena Mohan | Film Maker
77. Ruchika Negi | Film maker
78. Rustom Bharucha | Professor, School of Arts and Aesthetics, Jawaharlal Nehru University.
79. S.B. Upadhyay |Professor, Indira Gandhi National Open University
80. Saba Dewan | Film Maker
81. Saba Hasan | Artist
82. Sabeena Gadihoke | Associate Professor, AJK, MCRC, Jamia Millia, Islamia, New Delhi
83. Sameera Jain | Film maker, editor
84. Sameera Khan | Journalist; Writer
85. Samina Mishra | Film Maker
86. Shamsul Islam | Author
87. Sania Farooqui | Journalist
88. Sanjay Kak | Film maker
89. Sheba Chhachhi I Photographer
90. Sherna Dastur | Graphic Designer, Film Maker
91. Shikha Jhingan | Associate Professor, School of Arts and Aesthetics, Jawaharlal Nehru University, New Delhi
92. Shikha Sen | Film editor
93. Shilpa Phadke | Academic, School of Media and Cultural Studies, Tata Institute of Social Sciences, Mumbai
94. Shohini Ghosh | Professor, Jamia Millia Islamia
95. Shoma A Chatterji | Journalist and Author
96. Shriprakash | Film Maker
97. Stalin K. | Film Maker
98. Subasri Krishnan | Film Maker
99. Subha Das Mollick | Film Maker, academic
100. Sukumar Muralidharan | Journalist
101. Supriyo Sen | Film Maker
102. Surabhi Sharma | Film Maker
103. Sushma Veerappa | Film Maker
104. Swati Dandekar | Film Maker
105. Teena Gill | Film Maker
106. Uma Chakravarti | Feminist historian and filmmaker.
107. Vani Subramanian | Film Maker
108. Venkatesh Chakravarthy | Filmmaker & Academic
109. Vijaya Mulay | Film Maker
110. Vipin Vijay | Filmmaker
111. Vivan Sundaram I Artist
112. Yousuf Saeed | Film Maker


CIAA vs Dixit

Thursday, April 28th, 2016


Pic: BBC Nepali

Pic: BBC Nepali

From the Nepali press

Constitutional law expert Bipin Adhikari in BBC Nepali Service, 27 April

BBC: Many have accused the Commission for Investigation of Abuse of Authority (CIAA) of overstepping its jurisdiction in Kanak Mani Dixit’s detention. Is it so?

Bipin Adhikari: If a person holding public office abuses his power, the CIAA can investigate the corruption charges against him. It is within its jurisdiction.

If so, why is the CIAA being criticised?

The CIAA is not a court, it is just an institution with a mandate to investigate corruption cases. It has to follow a due process, and there is concern that it failed to do so in Dixit’s case.

The CIAA is still investigating, but it has already made public the complaints against him. Is it legal?

If the unproved complaints are made public and the accused is later absolved of all charges, the damage done to his reputation cannot be compensated.

The CIAA has said it had to arrest Dixit because the latter did not cooperate.

The CIAA can arrest a person who does not cooperate. But Dixit had moved the Supreme Court, claiming that the CIAA’s charge against him was an act of vengeance. And the court had ordered the anti-graft body to take action against Dixit only after collecting sufficient evidence. But the CIAA detained Dixit disregarding the apex court’s order. As a lawyer, I find Dixit’s stand logical.

As a constitution expert, do you find flaws in the two statements that the CIAA issued?

The second statement in English, in particular, is crude and ruthless. It exposes the CIAA’s negativity towards Dixit.

Dixit fought for democracy. But political leaders are silent even when he is not being allowed to meet his lawyers despite a Special Court order.

Perhaps they hadn’t seen the media reports. It is a person’s fundamental right to meet his lawyers and family members while in custody.

But his fundamental rights are being violated…

We have National Human Rights Commission and rights groups. We also have the Office of Attorney General. They should act if fundamental rights enshrined in the constitution are violated.

But there are also fears that the CIAA is being weakened.

The CIAA should not be weakened, it is a very important institution. The Dixit case is very big, if the CIAA fails to prove its accusations against him its reputation will be severely damaged.

SC directs CIAA on Dixit case

Thursday, April 28th, 2016

ChB-dcnU0AAZbKWThe Supreme Court on Thursday ordered the Commission for Investigation of Abuse of Authority (CIAA) to explain in writing why journalist Kanak Mani Dixit was detained.

In response to a habeas corpus petition filed by Dixit’s wife Shanta Dixit, a single bench of officiating Chief Justice Sushila Karki issued a show cause notice on Dixit’s arrest.

The court also directed the anti-graft body to present the Himalmedia co-publisher in the SC on Monday next week.

Claiming that the CIAA detained Dixit illegally, the petitioner had also challenged the Special Court’s decision to allow the anti-graft body to keep him in custody for 10 days.

The CIAA had arrested Dixit on last Friday accusing him of ‘amassing disproportionate wealth’ by abusing his power as the Chair of Sajha Yatayat, a public transport company. The Himalmedia chapter of the Federation of Nepalese Journalists (FNJ) says Dixit’s detention is an act of vengeance by the CIAA chief Lok Man Singh Karki. Dixit had criticised Karki’s appointment as the CIAA chief in 2013, arguing that he was found guilty by an independent probe committee of suppressing the pro-democracy movement in 2006.

International organisations of journalists, including the IFJ and the CPJ, have condemned Dixit’s detention, and have urged the authorities in Nepal to immediately release him.

Habeas corpus filed

Wednesday, April 27th, 2016

ChB-dcnU0AAZbKWA habeas corpus petition has been filed in the Supreme Court accusing the Commission for Investigation of Abuse of Authority (CIAA) of keeping in illegal detention journalist Kanak Mani Dixit.

The petition was filed by Dixit’s wife Shanta Dixit on Wednesday. The petitioner has claimed that Dixit was detained by the CIAA without notifying him about the charges against him.

Dixit, co-publisher of Himalmedia, was detained by the CIAA on last Friday from Patan Dhoka on the charge of ‘amassing disproportionate wealth’ by abusing his power as the Chair of Sajha Yatayat, a public transportation company.

Beside the CIAA, the Special Court has also been made a defendant in the petition for allowing the anti-graft body to keep Dixit in custody for 10 days without justifying why he should be detained.

The Himalmedia chapter of the Federation of Nepalese Journalists (FNJ) has stated that all the charges against Dixit are false and his detention was an act of vengeance by the CIAA Chair Lok Man Singh Karki. Dixit had vocally criticised Dixit’s appointment as the CIAA Chair, arguing that the former Chief Secretary was found guilty of suppressing the pro-democracy movement of 2006 by an independent probe commission.

The International Federation of Journalists (IFJ), the Committee to Protect Journalists (CPJ) and the World Association of Newspapers and News Publishers (WAN) have condemned Dixit’s arrest and urged the Nepali authorities to immediately release him. In Nepal, the FNJ and the Press Union have criticised the CIAA for overstepping its jurisdiction by detaining Dixit.

Twin passage

Wednesday, April 27th, 2016

Two American expatriates who devoted their lives to Nepal passed away this month

Jim Danisch


Jim Danisch came on a trek to Nepal in 1979 to meet his friend Judith Conan Chase, and for a trek. Their Guru Swami Rama suggested they get married, and they did in a Vedic ceremony in 1984. He worked for nine years in Thimi for the German agency, GTZ to promote ceramics designing a new type of kiln and introduce glazed porcelain as a Nepali handicraft. He helped set up 24 new ceramics workshops in Nepal.

He returned to California in 1995 and worked on his ceramic art and sculptures, but the tug of Nepal was too strong and he returned to a village in Kavre where, with Judith, he set up the Everything Organic Nursery to promote green agriculture and got local farmers interested.

“Jim was energetically involved in village life, helping to fund the expansion of a local school and to fund rain-harvesting ponds so that villagers enjoy water year round,” Judith wrote in a tribute. Danisch was also involved with his wife in the design of the Living Traditions Museum at Changu Narayan, which was badly damaged in last year’s earthquake, although the exhibits survived.

Jim Danisch died on 29 March in Dhulikhel Hospital after a brief and painless illness, near where he was married at Hansda Ashram in 1984. He was cremated in the full Hindu tradition at Danphe Ghat, the village cremation site, and Judith observed the 12-day mourning process.

Danisch saw the Hindu spiritual side of Nepali pottery-making and wrote in an article in Ceramics Today : ‘Symbolically, the potters’ wheel as great god Vishnu’s discus spins out the Hindu creation myth…

Barbara Adams


Barbara Adams came to Nepal 43 years ago even before the hippies did. The lush valley of Kathmandu, its pristine culture and nature attracted the early globetrotters of the new jet age. Sitting at the Royal Hotel one evening, she got chatting with Prince Basundhara, King Mahendra’s brother and the two became inseparable. Even though Basundhara was married, the two did not try to hide their affair, and were often seen together.

She was a high profile member of the Kathmandu’s high society and diplomatic circles in the 1970s and 80s, driving around in her convertible along Putali Sadak (long before Kathmandu got its first traffic light) with her striking blonde hair flowing in the slipstream. After the 1990 People’s Movement that turned the king into a constitution monarch, Adams fell foul with the democratic leaders and was once deported by the Girija Koirala government when she landed in Kathmandu airport from Delhi. After the conflict began, she became a peace activist and many were surprised by her open sympathy for the Maoist rebels in her translated columns for Jana Astha. However, she voiced her concern that violence would not achieve anything, and was critical of the state’s crackdowns in Maoist affected areas.

Barbara Adams also wrote a column for this newspaper in the early 2000s called Barbara’s Beat, with a strong voice in support of the downtrodden and the neglect of the Nepali state towards their needs. Having spent decades trying to bring about positive change through her writing, and despairing of the lack of progress after the conflict, she decided to set up Barbara Peace Foundation.

“I wanted to give something back to Nepal,” she told this newspaper in a profile about the Barbara Peace Foundation that she set up to help Dalit families in far-western Nepal. At first she had tried to create a Nepali ‘Peace Corps’, encouraging young people to volunteer to work in their own country rather than to migrate abroad for jobs. While successful, the project was too expensive to sustain. Her foundation buys land and sets up self-sustaining communities by giving the community more self-esteem.

Barbara Adams died of complications after an operation of her intestine in Kathmandu on 22 April. She was 84.

This line from one of her columns  in 2001 in Nepali Times gives a flavour of Barbara Adams’ sympathy for the underdogs of society and her direct writing style: ‘If we are to have peace, understanding and a meaningful dialogue with these young warriors who call themselves Maoist, we first have to … understand the problems which led idealistic young teachers and work-hardened farmers to risk their lives to take up arms and choose the risky path of revolution. We have to understand the movement’s roots, its deviations, its justification and compulsions, and the horror, the pain and also the humanity involved in the process of bringing change to the lives of the suffering masses.’


Call for Dixit’s release

Tuesday, April 26th, 2016
ex prez yadav

Former President Ram Baran Yadav after meeting journalist Kanak Mani Dixit at Bir Hospital on Tuesday. Photo: Bikram Rai

Two international organisations of journalists have asked the authorities in Nepal to immediately release journalist Kanak Mani Dixit, saying ‘the circumstances of his arrest are questionable’ and ‘a transparent investigation into the incident is needed’.

In separate press statements on Tuesday, the International Federation of Journalists (IFJ) and the Committee to Protect Journalists (CPJ) said the incident raised serious concerns over the state of press freedom in Nepal.

The IFJ said: “The arrest of Kanak Mani Dixit raises serious concerns for the statement of freedom of expression in Nepal. The circumstances of Dixit’s arrest are questionable, raising questions about proper judicial procedure. The IFJ urges the Government of Nepal to immediately release Dixit and conduct a transparent investigation into the arrest and the CIAA’s allegations.”

The CPJ’s Asia Program Coordinator Bob Dietz said: “Kanak Mani Dixit is a well-respected voice of responsible political discourse in Nepal, and should not be treated as a common criminal. We call on Nepalese authorities to release Dixit immediately.”

In another statement on Tuesday, the Asian Forum for Human Rights and Development (FORUM-Asia) called on the Nepal government to ‘issue a clear, transparent and unequivocal statement on his arrest, arrange for his immediate release, and ensure that he receives all due process rights as enshrined in the constitution of Nepal and international human rights standards’.

“Dixit’s arrest is a worrying development and a setback for freedom of expression in Nepal”, said Evelyn Balais-Serrano, Executive Director of FORUM-ASIA. “The manner and timing of his arrest seems to indicate this is a case of personal vendetta and intimidation tactics.”

Dixit, co-publisher of Himalmedia, was arrested by the Commission for Investigation of Abuse of Authority (CIAA) on last Friday on the charges of ‘amassing disproportionate wealth’ as the Chair of Sajha Yatayat, a public transport company. But the Nepali media, not just Himalmedia, has raised questions over the kind of accusations against him and the manner in which he was detained.

Dixit, also a human rights activist, had criticised the appointment of Karki as the CIAA Chair as the latter was found guilty of suppressing people’s uprising in 2006 by an independent commission. The Himalmedia chapter of Federation of Nepalese Journalists has said that Dixit’s arrest was a vengeful act by the CIAA.

Meanwhile, World Association of Newspapers and News Publishers (WAN-IFRA) and the World Editors Forum on Tuesday expressed serious concern at the detention of journalist and publisher Dixit.

In a letter to Prime Minister KP Oli, WAN-IFRA President Tomas Brunegård and the Forum’s President Marcelo Rech said: “We respectfully call on you to take all possible steps to ensure that the detention order is immediately rescinded and that the CIAA investigation is halted. Given the personal nature of this action, we urge you to appoint an independent inquiry into the conduct of the CIAA and its investigation.”

Dixit, who is now suffering from high blood pressure, is now in the Intensive Care Unit of Bir Hospital.  Former President Ram Baran Yadav on Tuesday met him in the hospital and enquired about his health condition.

CIAA reply to Kantipur

Monday, April 25th, 2016

CIAAThe Commission for Investigation of Abuse of Authority (CIAA) has accused Nepal’s mainstream media of ‘twisting facts’ and ‘presenting false (sic) as the truth’ about the anti-graft body’s role in the arrest of journalist Kanak Mani Dixit.

Issuing a press statement, which unlike previously is written in English and a Nepali version has yet not been issued, the Commission said on Monday ‘it is shocked’ at the way the issue has been ‘blown up’. In an obvious reference to a strongly-worded editorial in Kantipur on Monday, the CIAA said: ‘lt is very disappointing the way facts are twisted and false is presented as the truth in the editorial of a daily newspaper.’

The quaintly-worded statement went on:  ‘Even when the Commission has been carrying out the investigation maintaining the highest degree of legality, some quarter of people proximate with the accused have been shedding their crocodile tears accusing the Commission of working with an intent of taking revenge.’

The Kantipur editorial titled ‘Suspicious Action’ was sharply critical of the CIAA’s arrest of Dixit saying the Commission had overstepped its mandate. It said: ‘It is by now a well known fact that the CIAA chief Karki has a habit of going after people who point fingers at him… The Commission should only publicise the complaints about someone after it has gathered enough evidence to take them to a court of law.’

However, the CIAA statement said:  ‘When media is recognized as the fourth estate of the state, does this mean that a constitutional body cannot initiate any legal proceeding against a tainted person because he has worn the cover of a journalist?’

Full text of the CIAA statement:

ln connection with media reports issued on the arrest of Mr. Kanak Mani Dixit

Today the Commission for the lnvestigation of Abuse of Authority (CIAA) Nepal feels it worthwhile to remind and sensitize one and all that the Commission is mandated by the Constitution of Nepal, CIAA Act 1991 and Prevention of Corruption Act 1992 to investigate into corruption and amassing of wealth disproportionate to incomes by public servants and public office-bearers. However, the Commission enjoyed its jurisdiction also over the ‘improper conducts of the public servants’ in the past before it being eventually scrapped by the present constitution. Nevertheless, the Gommission is still an independent and autonomous constitutional body vested with the authority to investigate the corruption cases in the country.

As far as the intense outcry heard in some media on the arrest of Mr. Kanak Mani Dixit is concerned, the Commission feels that it is important to clarify the illusions and misconceptions created by such news. To begin with, Kanak Mani Dixit is the chairman of Sajha Yatayat which is a state-run transportation company having more than 95 percent shareholding of the state. As the state possesses an overwhelming chunk in the ownership of this company, it testifies that Mr. Dixit is a public position-holder and thus, falls under the jurisdiction of this Commission.

The Commission has received several complaints against Mr. Dixit including having amassed wealth disproportionate to his legal source of income among others. As these serious accusations are raised against Mr. Dixit, the Commission approached him for cooperation in its investigations and accordingly, he appeared in the Commission, received the property-detail forms, filled them up and submitted to the Commission. By doing this, he himself accepted the fact that he was a public office-bearer and was quite cooperative in the works of the Commission until this point of time.

The Commission, then, started investigating in-depth on the allegations against Mr. Dixit. The subsequent investigations revealed significant discrepancies between the submitted property details and the details obtained by the Commission from various sources. The Commission, then, requested Mr. Dixit to be present in person in the Commission and explain about this difference in his wealth as well as other confusions therein. One must note that this was not the exceptional measure taken by the Commission against the accused-in-question; rather this has been the standard procedure of this Commission wnicfr is being practiced by it from its very inception.

However, from this point, Mr. Dixit started ignoring the request of the Commission. The concerned investigation officer sent summons to him twice but he did not listen. Similarly, he did not pay any heed to countless telephone calls and messages sent by the concerned officer. The effort of calling and sending him the summons by the Commission continued for over four months but neither he responded nor appeared in the Commission. The Commission, then, sent a final seven-day summon to him on which he responded on the seventh day through a Ietter saying he could not cooperate in the investigation as he did not fall under the jurisdiction of the Commission.

Devoid of any choice, the Commission finally requested the local police authority to bring him to the Commission for carrying out the investigation. Reflecting the stubbornness in his character on this occasion also, he did not accept the arrest warrant and therefore, the officials arrested him fulfilling the legal procedures. He was detained for one night after medical checkup and clearance. But as some health problems surfaced on the next day, he was immediately taken to the hospital and has been staying there under medical observation. The right to medical care including the human rights of the accused has been strictly upheld.

ln addition to his engagement in-Sa7ha Yatayat, Mr. Dixit is said to have adopted multiple occupations such as involvement in business, press, l/NGOs, human rights advocacy and the media. The state naturally expects more from a high profile, responsible and intellectual person in contributing to the observance of rule of law in the country than an ordinary citizen. As claimed in the media that Mr. Dixit is a high profile personality, this means, he has greater responsibilities to respect the constitution and law of the country. He would have been widely appreciated had he cooperated in the investigation initiated by a constitutional body of the state. ln today’s democratic and civilized society, any suspect is constitutionally protected for his right to prove his innocence in the court of law and Mr. Dixit is not an exception. lf he believes he is innocent, investigation and the proceedings of the court are actually the opportunities for him to prove his innocence and disprove the accusations made against him. However, it is unfortunate that he himself created the necessity to make his arrest by repeatedly defying the requests and notices of this Commission.

Even when the Commission has been carrying out the investigation maintaining the highest degree of legality, some quarter of people proximate with the accused have been shedding their crocodile tears accusing the Commission of working with an intent of taking revenge. This is very disappointing and condemnable in any democratic and civilized society. The Commission is free of biases and enmity of any kind towards anyone and these accusations are totally baseless. Are journalists and human rights activists above the constitution and law? Are the people in these sectors totally immune against the Iaw of the land even when they go committing serious crimes? When media is recognized as the fourth estate of the state, does this mean that a constitutional body cannot initiate any legal proceeding against a tainted person simpflFt$ause he has worn the cover of a journalist? Besides, the Commission has initiated investigations on him not because he is a journalist but due to the multiple complaints received by this Commission in course of his involvement as public office-beaier. Arrest of Mr. Dixit for investigation has been justified by the endorsement of the Special Court to continue with the investigation by keeping him in the judicial custody. It has further motivated us to fight corruption with even greater dedication in the coming days.

The Commission is shocked at the way a routine work of the Commission, i.e investigating into corruption by a public official, is being made a mountain out of a molehill. It has been biown up in the media to make it an issue as if this is the most serious crisis faced today by the nation. lt is very disappointing the way facts are twisted and false is presented as the truth in the editorial of a daily newspaper. When the Commission has made the arrest of Mr. Dixit fulfilling the due process of law leaving no room for the critique, a big media house, supposed to be highly responsible towards the people and the state, is hell-bent manipulating this action of the Commission rather than analyzing this action from the legal and constitutional perspectives.

Similarly, some sections of elites have been reaping the benefits from the state showing them as the key actors of the political revolutions taken place in the past. Presenting themselves as the greatest freedom-fighters, they have been eating up at state’s resources and exploiting the immense opportunities from the state perennially. As they are never tired of giving advices to others, an important question arises as to whether they have fulfilled their duty, such as paying taxes, to the government? The history would probably evaluate their roles.

While highlighting the unprofessional tendency of some media in the country, one must not be mistaken that the Commission always has a profound respect towards and great expectations from the responsible and accountable journalism that strives for the establishment of rule of law and civic norms in the society.

Krishna Hari Pushkar


25 April, 2016