Online News Media in Nepal – INTRODUCTION
1.1.1History of Internet in Nepal
The e-mail services provided by Royal Nepal Academy for Science and Technology (RONAST) can be regarded as the first instance of the use of Internet technology in Nepal. The credit of introducing Internet amongst Nepalese people however goes to the private sector. It was with the initiative of Mercantile Office Systems that commercial e-mail service was first provided in June 1994. A year later, Mercantile Communications, a branch of Mercantile Office Systems started Internet Services. Mercantile had, at that time, established connection to Singapore Telecom, Singapore via a 64 kbps leased line through Nepal Telecommunications Corporation (NTC), the only basic telecom service operator.
ISP, being a new concept in Nepal then, there was no provision for its regulation. Later, when two other ISPs, World Link Communications and Computerland Communications System came forward with their proposal to start Internet services, the Ministry of Information and Communication decided to issue license to all three of them. In September 1997, license to operate Internet Services was finally issued to the three ISPs by the Ministry. In 1998, Nepal Telecommunications Authority (NTA), a telecommunications regulatory body was formed as per Telecommunications Act, 1997. NTA holds the power to issue license to Internet Service Providers and issued 36 licenses till January, 2008.
Internet facility is available in all development regions of our nation; Central, Eastern, Western, Mid-Western, and Far-Western. Internet is being distributed by Nepal Telecommunication Corporation itself and through subscription lines made available by license holder Internet Service Providers (ISPs) in Nepal. As per the reports from Nepal Telecommunication Authority (NTA), the number of such ISPs as of May 2008 is at 36. Out of 14 administrative zones in Nepal, 13 are fully or partially connected to the internet lines. All together there are 59 districts with internet connection with full and partial coverage inside the territory. The districts where internet facility is available have been included in the table below:
List of Districts Having Access to Nepal Telecom Internet Service
|Development Region |Zone |Count |District |POP |V-POP | | | |2 |Lalitpur |Patan | | | | |3 |Bhaktapur | | | | | |4 |Dhading | | | | | |5 |Nuwakot | | | | | |6 |Kavre |Banepa | | | | |7 |Sindhupalchowk | | | | |Janakpur |8 |Dhanusha |Janakpur | | | | |9 |Mahottari | | | | | |10 |Ramechhap | | | | | |11 |Sarlahi | | | | | |12 |Sindhuli |...