Kathmandu: Amid protests by supporters of rape-accused actor Paul Shah, the National Human Rights Commission (NHRC) on Friday requested all not to protest for or against the case that is under police investigation.
Issuing a statement on Friday, the national human rights body said that such activities could infringe the privacy and social dignity of both sides and also impact the investigation process.
“Investigations into criminal cases should be confidential, fair, independent, and should be held under fearless environment,” Lekhnath Bastola, the spokesperson of the Commission said in the statement. “The commission urges one al all not to publish one-sided news aimed at influencing the investigation process and record video without permission.”
NHRC said it has been carrying out monitoring and collecting information to that connection. It said such activities have affected the right to confidentiality mentioned in Article 28 and the right to justice referred to in Article 30 of the Constitution of Nepal, Clause 298 of the Criminal Penal Code, Article 12 of the Universal Declaration on Human Rights, 1948 and the right to confidentiality provided in Article 17 of the International Covenant on Civil and Political Rights.
Actor Paul Shah, who has been accused of raping a minor, had surrendered to police on February 27. Nepal’s artists, YouTubers and social media users have divided on the issue.
Some media have been publishing medical reports that should be confidential.
Recently, his ‘Ma Yesto Geet Gauchhu 2’ was released in which he has played a lead role. His co-star Pooja Sharma and other actors from the movie have launched a massive campaign to create noise.
Hundreds of YouTube content have been uploaded apparently as a trick for clickbait. Most of the content have breached the principle of confidentiality and respect the privacy of both parties.
Even some media outlets have published the victim’s medical report which is against the law.
Nepal Police warns action
Indicating the recent developments on the case, Nepal Police has warned of action against those spreading misinformation and false news on social media.
Lately, some people and groups have misused technology and published contents that impact the investigation process. Such contents are misleading and contain false captions and photos with the motive to incite the public and spread disinformation, reads the statement issued by the spokesperson of the bureau Nabindra Aryal.
The bureau has further said that this type of activity undermines social harmony and infringes the right to privacy of the victim which will result in adverse social and physiological impacts on the victim.
Realizing the fact, Nepal Police informs all that such activities on social media will be punishable as per Section 47 of the Electronic Transaction Act, states the statement.