Speakers sharing the podium at the function organised to mark the 112th birth anniversary of the Gorkhapatra Sunday emphasised on the need to strengthen the coverage and capacity of the corporation to sustain the publications and ensure their quality. Speaking at the function as chief guest, Minister for Information and Communications Raj Kishore Yadav lauded the role of the Gorkhapatra as a national publishing house and stressed on the need to provide support from all quarters to ensure that the entity sustains to nurture its objective and independent national outlook, perspectives and interests. He also expressed the commitment to extend some support to the corporation from the government so that the institutional and material constraints faced by the corporation could be alleviated.
As mentioned by Minister Yadav, the private sector has emerged stronger in the media and communications development in Nepal, but the Gorkhapatra has been the one that not only upholds and advocates the wider public interest but also represents the broader interests of the nation. It can ill afford to be guided to meet and promote the parochial interests of a private business house or an entity. And by its very purpose of incorporation, the Gorkhapatra aims at serving the enlightened national interest and goal. However, the current state of the Gorkhapatra, as highlighted by several speakers at the function, is very poor, especially from the financial viability point of view. The corporation is made to confront with a paradoxical situation as it has to serve the broader public interests on behalf of the government as a government-owned media while having to compete in the market from a professional point of view. But it does not receive any protection and support from the state. The corporation pays taxes to the government as any other private sector entity, but it has to carry out public functions as an organisation and machinery of the government.
The government should, as hinted at by Minister Yadav, give priority to at least publishing official notices and advertisements in the publications of the Gokhapatra Corporation so that it can generate revenue to continue fulfilling the national responsibility of informing and educating the people with independent, secular and unbiased facts, views and opinions. By providing space to various languages in the country, the Gorkhapatra truly represents the multilingual feature and characteristics of the Nepali nation. In order that the corporation is protected and maintained to carry out a similar role in the new context of the country, there is need of support from the government.