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The end of an era

KATHMANDU, JUL 01 -

The year 2008 was marked by great hope when major political parties came to an agreement to draft a new constitution for Nepal in the next two years. The task, unfortunately, was not completed, even after an additional two year extension. This year, on May 27, the hope of the entire nation was shattered when the CA was dissolved.

In the wake of the constitution drafting process, BBC Media Action, along with support from the United Nations Population Fund (UNFPA) and the UK government’s Department for International Development (DFID), started a radio drama, Katha Mitho Sarangiko. The drama, broadcast every week on BBC World Service Radio, intended to assist the constitution writing and peace process. In 2010, Sarangiko Bhalakusari—a discussion programme on social issues with a focus on violence against women—began airing every Saturday. It invited specialists in various fields to speak on problems and solutions. After 150 episodes of Katha Mitho Sarangiko and over 80 episodes of Bhalakusari, the programmes have recently come to a successful end.

Aired from more than 100 FM stations around the country, the programmes have had an estimated 8 million listeners who have given it an overwhelmingly positive response.

Amid a gathering of media personalities, writers, and journalists, two albums related to the programmes were launched on Thursday at Moksh Live Restaurant, Jhamsikhel. The first audio CD contained the Katha dramas, while the next album, Ringdai Ghumdai, included 16 songs composed by the lead actor and narrator of KMS, Prakash Gandharva. The event also saw the launch of the book Katha Mitho Sarangiko Bhalakusari, comprising the script of the entire drama series of KMS, interviews with victims of gender based violence as well as listeners’ feedback.

“There are some children in my care centre who have seen their father killing their own mother, and many other forms of gender based violence in their early years,” said Pushpa Basnet, the founder of Early Childhood Development Centre.

“It is a proven fact that radio dramas are helpful in reducing gender based violence and other social evils deeply rooted in our society,” Basnet added.

Two music videos—one based on drug addiction among the youth and the other on Prakash Gandharva’s experiences—were also screened at the event.

An agreement to air Katha and Bhalakusari on Radio Nepal was also signed during the event. Executive director of Radio Nepal, Tapa Nath Shukla, said this decision was made keeping in mind the “quality of the content and the positive message it has been able to successfully deliver”.

Katha Mitho Sarangiko was first broadcast on Radio Nepal on July 1 and will be aired every Sunday at 8:30 am while Sarangiko Bhalakusari will be aired every Monday at the same time. The shows are estimated to reach 86 percent of the country’s population.

On June 29, BBC Media Action began airing a new drama series on the theme of good governance

Posted on: 2012-07-02 08:27


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