About Us

Founded in 2020 by Nepalese Indigenous rights activists and journalists, the Indigenous Rights Foundation is a legally registered non-profit organisation and a sister organisation of the Indigenous Media Foundation, established in 2011.

Indigenous Rights Foundation advocates for the effective enforcement of international human rights agreements Nepal has ratified, including ILO Convention 169 and the UN Declaration on the Rights of Indigenous Peoples (UNDRIP), by raising awareness primarily through media channels. It leverages ITV Nepal, Nepal's only multilingual Indigenous television channel, to advocate for, secure, and protect their human rights and fundamental freedoms, equally ensuring their protection, promotion, and defence. ITV Nepal today produces and broadcasts TV programmes in 20 different indigenous languages, which helped not only to increase indigenous voices, participation, and access to media but also strengthened the use of indigenous languages in media and pushed for the recognition of the right to freedom of expression and the right to information in the mother tongues in Nepal.

Nepal's Indigenous Peoples, officially recognised as 59 different communities, are the custodians of distinct cultures, languages, spiritual practices, indigenous knowledge, and biological diversity. They boast of their own mother tongues, traditional cultures, written and oral histories, traditional homelands, and geographical clusters, and they comprise 35.2 percent (12 million of the country's total 30 million population), speaking over 90 percent of the total 124 languages spoken in Nepal.


The Indigenous Rights Foundation envisions a Nepal where Indigenous Peoples govern themselves, control their lands and resources, and practice their traditions freely. In the meantime, free from discrimination, they will participate in all levels of government, reaching their full potential with equal rights and dignity.


The mission of the Indigenous Rights Foundation is to empower Indigenous Peoples in Nepal to achieve self-governance, land and resource rights, and cultural freedom. We work to dismantle discrimination and ensure their equal participation at all levels of government. Through media outreach, we raise awareness and advocate for their right to reach their full potential with dignity and respect.