Media is a powerful tool that helps to influence the thoughts and perception of people towards an issue. The role of media is not just about providing the information but it is also about being correct and independent. However, yellow journalism has set a major drawback in the role the media plays in providing the information to the public. Hence, people working in the media should use their powers wisely.
Nepal is a democratic country and media has established deep roots in the country. It plays a vital role in informing citizens about the developments and progress of the society. Media does not only make democracy to function in its true spirit but also helps citizens to make informed choices. So, in order for the media to work properly, it should be free from political and governmental pressures to ensure that media is playing a significant role in democracy.
In Nepal, political system is close in spirit to the model of liberal democracy.Â When we look at the constitution of Nepal, the power of the legislature, executive and judiciary have been thoroughly demarcated. There is a competition among the party system that are in operation with flexibility of roles of government and opposition.
The role of media in Nepal, one of the smallest democracies of the world is different from merely disseminating information and entertainment. Educating & informing the masses for their social upliftment, progress and development should be its ambit. In a country like Nepal, where there exists poverty, unemployment and underdevelopment, media has a great responsibility towards developmental journalism.Â Media has got an extensive role to play by forming the public opinion, which would create a pressure among the political parties to address the core issues haunting the countryâ€™s progress.
Media is not only a powerful tool but also it has the ability to make and break the opinion of the citizens. It is such a crucial tool that if media remarks a person as a criminal thenÂ people would regard that person to be one blindly. Media has the capability to swing perceptions or evoke emotions.
Call it newspapers, television; cinema or any social networking sites, media rules both the hearts and minds of the people. For instance, the advertisements by Maha Jodi on â€œelection campaignâ€ relating to wise casting of votes not only charmed the public but also created a huge impact on their minds. We can also take another example of â€œTough Talkâ€ an initiative of Dil Bhusan Pathak, which influence our minds and change our way of thinking on some major social issues prevailing in our society.
The success of Nepal Movement II in can be taken as a strong example where media helped to make our society democratic by placing emphasis on issues that were supressed.Â For the proper functioning of a democratic system, there is necessity of transparency and accountability. The peace of our country has been snatched away due to a strong nexus between corruption and democrats intertwined by politics. The lethal politics played by these democrats â€“ the politicians, the bureaucrats, and criminals are far away from the peak of dextrous politics being played by the media. For their vested interest, they throw the whole society into an inferno.
In recent, there has been a significant amount of media coverage of exploitative malpractices by the corrupted government officials, which has helped in bringing the attention of concerned government bodies. It has influenced the minds of people to understand that bribery is a crime and they no longer need to please the officials for their works to be done, as it is their basic rights.
In the transition period of Nepal, media plays an important role in providing the true facts to Nepalese people, which could influence them to choose the government by whom they want to be governed.Â There are media who are not performing their duties properly and have become so called â€˜paid mediaâ€™ which should be demoralized and brought forward to the people. Itâ€™s impossible to live in todayâ€™s world without media and the media persons and journalists engaged in corrupt activities playing the dirty game of minting money should be identified and punished.
Â By:Ankit Khanal
Program Manager at Nepal Peacebuilding Initiative