Media Monitoring of #NepalEarthquake - May 4

10 days on, the media coverage on earthquake in Nepal has mostly concentrated on rebuilding efforts and aid management. Interestingly, with the realization that Nepal needs to go through comprehensive reconstruction, the fundraising efforts have been uniquely innovative such as a visual artist developing a poster that reads, “The Least You Can Do is the Most” while Boise Café hosting benefit cuisines for the victims and Charity Champagne Shopping Night being hosted at Brisbane.  Some of the highlights of today’s media reporting are presented below:

Aid Management

European Union has developed a fact sheet which explains that the commission has deployed more humanitarian aid and civil protection experts to the affected areas. Through the Copernicus Emergency Management Service satellite images/maps of the disaster area have been developed to support the rescue operations. There is also European Commission's Emergency Response Coordination Centre monitoring the development of rescue operations. UK Aid through an info-graphic has provided a detailed breakdown of its 22.8 million aid to the earthquake relief and rescue operations with 3 million via DFID’s Rapid Response Facility to six trusted NGOs and charities; 5 million for more medics, humanitarian experts, supplies and heavy lifting equipment for Kathmandu airport; 5 million to the Disaster Emergency Committee; 5.3 million for UN agencies in Nepal; 2.5 million for UN helicopters; 2 million for British Red Cross.

Jumla district alone has collected 1 million rupees for quake victims through various government and non-government agencies. There was also news on Twitter regarding Bangladesh providing 10 metric ton rice and water to Nepal for the quake victims. Human Appeal Australia is also supervising aid distribution in Nepal in order to assess the aid effectiveness. Pahilo Post reports that in order to carry out exploration, rescue and relief efforts, Home Ministry has demanded 50 billion rupees from Prime Minister’s Relief Fund.

Government Efforts

Swasthya Khabar Patrika reports that government has made a strong decision to suspend health workers for not going to affected areas by the government. Republica reports that government has also shown concerns over possible misuse of donations to quake victims. There is also report that government is to table a special resolution motion in the upcoming Parliament session, with a relief and rehabilitation package for the people of the earthquake -hit areas. There has also been a good initiation on the part of the government releasing Rs. 1.35 billion of relief fund to 47 affected districts. There have also been news about government has decided to request foreign search and rescue teams working in Nepal to return home as per the meeting of the Central Natural Disaster Relief Committee on Sunday took a decision to this effect.


Despite these encouraging government efforts, the public outrage in Nepal has not stopped yet. Quake victims of Southern belt of Lalitpur have also complained of not getting relief as reported by Republica. An individual on Twitter comments, “Where are all the ministers of Nepal? Helping victims?” New York Times covers an interesting article by Jeffrey D. Sachs on disaster management as he advocates on building up strong disaster management system. Himal South Asian has also dedicated a special issue about human stories from the field. 

Relief Efforts

In order to support relief and rescue efforts, Crisis Mappers have been actively contributing by developing their maps with its skype rooms in full swing. Although IndianMediaGoBack hashtag is trending on Twitter amidst wide criticism, Indian reporter Rahul Kanwal provides a comprehensive coverage reporting from ground zero with news on tourists turning into relief workers, valuables at the historical and religious sites being stolen by ‘treasure hunters’, commentary on aid route through government channels; disastrous trend of clicking selfies under the damaged historical sites; and fear syndrome disturbing Nepalese in general. Twitter also displays UNFPA distributing trademark dignity kits to quake affected pregnant women and lactating mothers and Water Aid Nepal launches emergency water and sanitation response for the quake victims. SwasthyaKhabar Patrika also reports Vayodha Hospital providing free of cost treatment to earthquake victims and Basanta Chaudhary Foundationsetting up a special medical camp to prevent outbreak of epidemics in association of Norvic at the Norvic Institute of Technology compound at Lubhu. Setopati also reports some relief aid being provided to the Muslim community. Air Map has also been launched to enable safe, legal and hassle free drone flying to support the rescue and relief efforts.  

With 8.2 million people affected by the earthquake, death toll reaching 7365 and 575 schoolsbeing completely damaged, it remains a major challenge as to develop an efficient reconstruction mechanism to promote health and education along with ensuring availability of food, clothes and shelter – the preconditions for survival.

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