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Indian journalist slapped in Nepal

Senior journalist Nalini Singh created a furore when she allegedly insulted a reporter and was slapped by the victim.

india Updated: Dec 22, 2006 17:40 IST

Senior Indian journalist and former Bharatiya Janata Party minister Arun Shourie's sister Nalini Singh has triggered a storm in Nepal after being accused of involvement in an altercation with a reporter of her Nepal1 TV channel.

Singh, whose New Delhi-based media company TV Live runs Nepal1, created a furore on Thursday when she allegedly insulted a reporter and was slapped by the victim.

Singh reportedly called Anjana Rawal, a Nepali reporter covering women's issues for the channel, a "bitch" and asked her to "eat" her shoes.

"Who do you think you are to be dressing so grandly, a princess?" Singh reportedly said. "Eat my shoes for lunch, you bitch. All Nepalis are like you."

Rawal slapped Singh and said she would file a defamation suit Sunday.

"I slapped Singh because not only did she insult me alone but all Nepalis," she said.

Though the staff of Nepal1 did not intervene, somebody called the police.

Members of a trade union affiliated to the Communist Party of Nepal-Unified Marxist Leninist, also arrived at the spot.

On Friday, a Nepal daily, the Himalaya Times, and a couple of weeklies reported the incident.

Singh's alleged high-handedness was condemned by Sancharika Samuha, an organisation representing women journalists.

"We condemn the slur on Nepalis and demand an investigation," the organisation president Babita Basnet said.

Singh has been acquiring a reputation for humiliating employees, forcing several to leave.

The wife of a former Nepal1 employee filed a police complaint accusing Singh of abduction when her husband went missing, but later retracted it.

Last year, during the direct rule of King Gyanendra, Nepal1 was forced to shut down by the army because of suspicion that a correspondent reporting a guerrilla ambush of an army patrol was in cahoots with the rebels.

Rawal, sister of a popular poet and wife of an army major, who is posted in the royal palace in Kathmandu, was reportedly asked by Singh to help effect a reconciliation with the army.

First Published: Dec 22, 2006 17:40 IST