Girija Prasad Koirala Foundation marked the 94th birth anniversary of Late GP Koirala by organizing a one-day symposium on "Connecting Nepal's Tourism/Culture Promotion to Asian Countries" in Kathmandu on 4th July 2017. Honorable Minister for Finance Mr. Gyanenedra Bahadur Karki was the chief guest of the program.
On March 18, 2017, to commemorate the 7th year of passing of legendary political leader GP Koirala, GP Koirala Foundation (GPKF) organized a one-day interaction program on the topic “Nepal-India Connectivity: Opportunities for Holistic Development”. The program was chaired by the chairperson of GPKF, Hon’ble Sujata Koirala. The chief guest of the program was senior leader of Nepali Congress, Ram Chandra Poudel. Charge D’Affairs of the Indian Embassy HE Vinaya Kumar, Professor of Jawaharlal Nehru University Dr. Sangeeta Thapaliya, Former Ambassador Dr. Suresh Chandra Chalise, Hon’ble Lalbabu Yadav, President of Nepal Council of World Affairs - Dr. Rajendra B Shrestha and CEO of National Reconstruction Authority - Dr. Govinda Pokhrel were guests at the program.
On Feb 2, 2017, GP Koirala Foundation organized a one day workshop on Cyber-crime in Kathmandu. The objective of the program was to create awareness among students about criminal activity that are being conducted in the cyber space. Deputy Superintendent of Nepal Police Pashupati Raya was an instructor at the program. The program was chaired by the chairperson of the GP Koirala Foundation Hon’ble Sujata Koirala. Hon’ble Man Bahadur Biswakarma, Former Ambassador Dr. Suresh Chalise, Former Ambassador Dr. Dinesh Chandra Bhattarai, Dr. Ram Thapaliya, Dr. Chandra Pokhrel, Joint Secretary Shankar Kharel were guests at the program.
In her opening address, board member of the GP Koirala Foundation, Krishna Kharel expressed her view that the internet had made the world a global village. However, in the present day, it had also become a hotbed of criminal activity. Through the workshop, she hoped that the GP Koirala Foundation would be able to contribute to the minimization of criminal activities in the cyber space.
Deputy Superintendent of Nepal Police Pashupati Raya began the workshop by defining what constituted cyber-crime. He posited that even harassment and bullying in the cyber-space ,and gaining unauthorized access to someone else’s “system” amounted to cyber-crime. With internet penetration reaching a large swathe of the population across Nepal, Raya said that instances of cyber-crime on social media websites had sharply risen.
Raya shared his own experience in dealing with cyber-crime cases. He mentioned that social media websites were rampant with harassment cases. Cyber “stalking” and extortion were also not uncommon. He also shared instances where attempts at defamation had led to suicide of victims, and as such cyber-crime was to be taken very seriously. He further shared an important information that cases involving defamation could be dealt with a secret trial so that the identities of the victims remains confidential.
Citing several real world cases, Raya said that young people need to take extra care about their sharing their experiences online and their online privacy since people with malicious intent tend to abuse online information for personal gains through swindling and extortion. He suggested that young people follow the mantra of “Stop, think and connect.” He added that criminals in the cyber sphere were using new ways to exploit the trusting nature of victims, and therefore the young people need to be skeptical of people making friendly approaches on the internet. In the last fiscal year alone, the Nepal Police registered 830 cases of cyber-crime. He expressed his satisfaction at the fact that the Nepal Police had been successful in apprehending a Nigerian citizen involved in cyber fraud in Nepal. He added that dangerous instances of sexual exploitation of children through the internet have also been reported in Nepal. Raya also argued that cyber warfare and cyber terrorism presented new real–world threats, and Nepal needs “Mutual Legal Assistance Treaty” with other countries to effectively tackle cyber-crime.
Towards the end of the program, the audience, composed mainly of students, also engaged in a lively discussion with Raya. Hon’ble Sujata Koirala also sought Raya’s opinion on how to tackle cyber assistance to crimes like human trafficking and terrorism, and how to protect minors from cyber-crime. To this inquiry, Raya suggested that the Electronic Transactions Act, 2063 BS which oversees cyber-crime in Nepal needed upgrading, to include these instances. On her closing remarks, the chair of the program, Hon’ble Sujata Koirala expressed her gratitude to Raya for his time. However, she expressed her dismay at the sorry state of the legal system in Nepal and hoped for improvement in this sector. She also expressed her commitment that the GP Koirala Foundation would hold similar programs in the future to mobilize the youth for Nepal’s progress, and she invited the young people in the audience to reach out to the foundation if they wanted any assistance from the foundation. She also hoped that youth would step forward for the betterment of Nepal.