Libel and Slander Act, 2016 (1959)


Published: 1959

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Libel and slander Act, 2016 E
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Libel and Slander Act, 2016 (1959)

Date of Authentication Date of publication in Nepal Gazette
2016.3.14 (28 June 1959) 2016.3.15 (29 June 1959)
Amendments, Date of authentication and
publication in Nepal Gazette
1. Libel and Slander (First Amendment)
Act, 2037(1980) 2037.5.26 (7 September 1980)
2. Some Nepal Acts (Amendment) Act,
2039(1982) 2039.5.3 (19 August 1982)
3. Some Nepal Acts Amendment Act,
2055(1999) 2055.10.7 (21 January 1999)
4. Republic Strengthening and Some Nepal
Laws Amendment Act, 2066 (2010) 2066.10.7 (21 January 2010)
Act Number 10 of the Year 2016 (1959)
An Act Made to Provide for Punishment for
Offences of Libel and Slander
Preamble: Whereas, it is expedient to provide for punishment for the
offences of libel and slander for safeguarding the right of people generally to
maintain their prestige, honor and dignity;
Now, therefore, be it enacted by His Majesty on the advice of the Council of
Ministers.

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1. Short Title, Extent and Commencement: (1) This Act may be
called as the "Libel and Slander Act, 2016 (1959)".
(2) This Act shall commence immediately.
(3) This Act shall extend throughout ……..1 Nepal, and apply to
all citizens of Nepal wherever they reside.
2. Definitions: Unless the subject or the context otherwise requires, in
this Act, the term "general public" includes any class or community of
the general public, and the term "public" shall also be interpreted
accordingly.
3. Libel/defamation: If a person by way of writing or words or signs
or understandable symbols accuses another person of any charge or
publishes such matter with intent to damage that other person's
character or knowingly or having reason to believe that it w ill make
such a damage, the person shall be deemed to have libel d that other
person.
Explanation:
(1) Where any charge/accusation is made against a deceased and
that act would damage his or her character while he or she was
alive and has been done with intent to injure the spirit of his or
her family or other near relative of him or her, such an act may
be held as a libelous act.
(2) An accusation made satirically or un-straightforwardly
(indirectly) may be held as a libelous act.
(2a)2 An accusation or publicity made knowingly to damage other's
character or w ith motive to make a false allegation may be held
as a libelous act. 1 Deleted by the Republic Strengthening and Some Nepal Laws Amendment Act, 2066

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(3) No act shall be held to be a libelous act damaging the prestige
of a person unless an allegation is so made directly or indirectly
that it, in the opinion of other persons, undermines the person's
moral or intellectual character or character or reputation
relating to race or occupation or that it, in a believable manner,
indicates that the person's body is in a hateful situat on or in a
situation normally considered to be degrading.
4. Circumstances where libel is not held: Notwithstanding anything
contained in Section 3, the commission of the following act or matter
shall not be deemed to be a libelous act:
(1) In the event of a need for the interest of the general public, to
make an allegation of true matter against any person or publish
such an allegation; the matter of whether an allegation made
against a person is in the interest of the general public or not
shall depend on the fact,
(2) To express any opinion in good faith about the conduct of any
public servant which he or she was performing the functions
and duties of his or her office or about his or her character to
the extent only that understandable from that conduct,
Interpretation: For the purposes of this clause, the term
"public servant" means a person who is a public servant within
the definition of public servant set forth in the Prevention of
Corruption Act, 2059 (2002).3
(3) To express any opinion in good faith about the conduct of any
person which is concerning a public issue/question and about
2 Inserted by the Some Nepal Acts (Amendment) Act, 2039 3 The Prevention of Corruption Act, 2017 was promulgated instead of the Public Servants' (Corruption
Prevention) Act, 2013, and the Prevention of Corruption Act, 2059 was promulgated instead of the Prevention of Corruption Act, 2017.

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his or her character to the extent only that understandable from
that conduct,
(4) In the course of any court proceedings, to publish a true report
actually reflecting the results thereof,
Explanation: For the purposes of this Clause, the term "court"
means an open bench established by any judge or other fficer
of a court to make a public inquiry in time.
(5) To express any opinion on merits or demerits of any civil or
criminal case settled by a court or about the conduct of the
plaintiff, defendant, w itness or attorney of any such a case or
his or her character to the extent only that is understandable
from that conduct,
(6) Where a person who is to do any matter has submit that matter
for the opinion of the general public, to express any opinion on
merits or demerits of that matter or the character of the person
doing that matter to the extent only that is understandable from
the same,
Explanation: In submitting a matter by the person doing that
matter for the opinion of the general public, it shall suffice to
clearly state that he or she has done that matter or do any act by
that person inferring that intention.
(7) Where a person has any right over another person by virtue of
law or a legal bond with that other person, to indicate in good
faith by the person any deficiency in the conduct of that other
person on any act or matter relating to that right,

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(8) To make any charge, that can be made against any person,
before the legally competent authority in good faith against that
person on that matter,
(9) To blame, in good faith, the character of a person for to
safeguard one's or other's interest or for the interest of the
general public, and
(10) To alter any person against another person for the interest of
that person or of a person in which he or she has interest or for
the interest of the general public.
5. Penalties for commission of libel or printing or carving any
libelous matter: If a person commits the following office, the person
shall be liable to a fine of up to Five Thousand Rupees and may also
be liable to the punishment of imprisonment for a term not exceeding
Two years:
(1) Libeling other person, or
(2) Printing or carving any matter knowingly or have a reasonable
reason to believe that it may result in libel to others.
6. Penalties for sale of any matter in which any such matter is
printed or carved as may be libelous: If any person sells any
matter knowingly that any libelous matter is printed or carved in it
and offers the same for sale, the person shall be liable to a fine of up
to One Thousand Rupees and may also be liable to the punishment of
imprisonment for a term not exceeding Six months.
7. Penalties for abusing knowingly with intent to disturb peace:
If any person abuses and provokes another person with the intent that
if that other person is abused and provoked, that other person will
breach public peace or commit any other offence or knowingly that

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there is such a likelihood, that person shall be liable to a fine of up to
Five Hundred Rupees and may also be liable to the punishment of
imprisonment for a term not exceeding Six months.
8. In the event of commission of any act with intent to defame
woman: If any person, with intent to defame any woman, says
anything in a manner that she can hear or see it or exp esses any kind
of word or gesture or shows any article or undermines her privacy,
that person shall be liable to a fine of One Hundred Rupees to Five
Hundred Rupees and may also be liable to the punishment of
imprisonment for a term not exceeding Six months.
9. Acts of minor libel or defamation: If any such act is done that
may result in a minor libel, slander or defamation of minor nature in
which a reasonable or prudent person would not make a complaint or
is done with that intention or knowingly that it may so happen, such
an act shall not constitute an offence under this Act.
10.4 Penalties for making false accusation with intent to cause
injury: If any person files or causes to be filed a case of libel or
slander against any person with intent to cause injury to that person
knowingly that it is not just or there is no legal ground to file such a
case under this Act, the person shall be liable to a fine of Five
Hundred Rupees to Five Thousand Rupees, in the case of a libel case,
and to a fine of One Hundred Rupees to Five Hundred Rupees, in the
case of a slander case. The case trying authority shall also cause the
expenses incurred in that case to be recovered to the opponent party
from the person filing or causing to be filed such a case.
4 Amended by the First Amendment.

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Explanation: For the purposes of this Section, the term "injury"
means any loss or damage caused illegally to the body, heart (mana),
prestige or property of any person.
11.5 Limitation: If there is any cause to institute a case against any
person under this Act, a suit has to be filed within Six months after
the date of the cause of action.
11A.6 Procedures to be followed: In trying and settling cases under this
Act, the case trying authority shall follow the procedures as referred
to in the Special Court Act, 2059 (2002).7
12.8 Compensation: If a person is held to have libeled or slandered
another person, the adjudicating authority may order th payment of
compensation in a reasonable sum by the offender to that other person
having regard also to his or her social prestige and honor9 as well as
of the expenses incurred in the case by the offender to that other
person. If it is held that libel has been committed o a person already
dead, the amount of such compensation and expenses shall be
provided to his or her near heir who has suffered injury from such a
libel or slander.
13. Repeal: Numbers 1, 2, 3, 4, 6, 6A., 7, 8, and 9 of the Chapter on
Libel and Slander of the Muluki Ain (General Code) are, hereby,
repealed.

Note bene: The Muluki Ain that commenced on 1 Bhadra 2020 does not contain
the Chapter on Libel and Slander.
5 Amended by Some Nepal Acts (Amendment) Act, 2039 6 Inserted by Some Nepal Acts (Amendment) Act, 2039 7 Amended by the Special Court Act, 2059 8 Amended by the First Amendment. 9 Inserted by Some Nepal Acts (Amendment) Act, 2055