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IIFA drags government into controversy

By Our Reporter
The decision of the government to host the International Indian Film Academy in Kathmandu has been dragged into controversy, mostly due to the disbursement from the government coffer in organising the event.
Not only the social site users but also the leaders of the ruling party have criticised the decision stating that the government should blow Rs. 1 billion for the event. Leader Bhim Rawal of the ruling Nepal Communist Party strongly criticised the decision. He even entered the issue in one of the sessions of the National Dialogue on Foreign Policy on Saturday when Rawal, questioned the rationale behind Nepal government’s plan to host the International Indian Film Academy (IIFA)awards in Kathmandu.
How will this strengthen Nepal’s soft power?” said Rawal while speaking in the session “Changing Geopolitics”. “There are other ways to promote our country and what we have to offer to the world.”
The government’s decision to host the IIFA has drawn criticism not only from Rawal but also from various sections of the society. According to Nepal Tourism Board,, the event is set to receive around $4 million (nearly Rs 450 million) from the Nepal government, which will also take care of the airfare, hotel stay and security for movie stars and their entourage.
Many have taken to social media to criticise the government move, saying hosting the Bollywood awards show is nothing but government’s misplaced priority.
However, Minister for Communication and Information Technology Gokul Prasad Baskota said that the government had not decided to provide any fund to host the event. He further said the final decision to organise the event was yet to be made.
Instead he said the event would help promote Nepal and after hosting the event about 50/60 million tourists will know about Nepal, which he argued would help make the Visit Nepal Year 2020 a success. However, people have not believed the government, which is evident from the growing criticism in the social sites and media outlets.

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