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Govt to protect mass media as industry

With a note of assurance to extend all kinds of support to the mass media, Finance Minister AHM Mustafa Kamal today termed the mass media as an industry and said the government is pledge-bound to protect it.

“The mass media is not a small industry… We have to protect the industry”, he said as the chief guest while addressing the second session of a day-long conference organized by the Broadcast Journalist Center (BJC) held at the Teachers Student Center (TSC) of the Dhaka University here.

Praising the role of the media, the finance minister said the media is portraying the achievements of the country before the wo...

30-day closure of newspaper advised

The Bangladesh Press Council may have the power to hold up the publication of any newspaper or service of any news agency for a maximum of 30 days if the paper or agency violates the directives of the council. The law commission, presenting its views on the draft of the Press Council Act’s amendment, recommended to the press council that such a provision be included in the amendment by the Bangladesh Law Commission. The recommendation was signed by Bangladesh Law Commission chairman ABM Khairul Haque, its members M Shah Alam and Justice ATM Fazle Kabir.

More community radio in offing: Inu

The government would further expand community radio in private sector in order to provide platform for citizens to raise their voices, especially for the masses at the grassroots, Information Minister Hasanul Haque Inu said today. Inu revealed this information to visiting Assistant Secretary General of the United Nations Howe Liang Zhu, who is now in the city on a four-day visit to Bangladesh, said an official release. “We have taken the decision (for more community radios) to bring the marginalized people at inuthe mainstream of...

Gov’t in dark unless media is free, says Irene Khan

Irene Z. Khan, director general of the International Development Law Organisation, says development and democracy are not possible without the presence of a free media and freedom of speech and the government will be in the dark unless the media is free. The prominent rights activist pointed this out on Monday afternoon while delivering a speech in Dhaka, titled ‘Human rights and free media: Beneficial or impediment for development’. The speech, delivered at the Daily Star Centre in Dhaka and was organised by the Daily Star as part of its 25th founding anniversary celebrations. Irene Khan, in her speech, talked about the history of the free media in the USA and Europe and

Concerns mount as govt plans new anti-cybercrime law

The goverment is aiming to enact a controversial digital security law aimed at tackling digital crimes. But experts fear the proposed legislation could also be used to muzzle freedom of expression in the polarized nation. “With increased digital services, crimes not only occur online but also through digital services. So we are planning to enact a more elaborate act to tackle all sorts of digital crimes.” These are the words of Bangladesh’s State Minister for Information and Communication Technology (ICT) Junaid Ahmed Palak, speaking on January 12 at a press conference in the capital Dhaka about

Spies accused of blocking media adverts

Officers from the army’s intelligence agency have instructed major companies to stop advertising in Bangladesh’s two leading independent newspapers, sources told Al Jazeera. The demand for foreign-owned corporations to stop advertising in the Prothom Alo and Daily Star newspapers was allegedly given by officers from the Directorate General of Forces Intelligence (DGFI), following the August 16 publication of a story on the army’s killing of five men in the Chittagong Hill Tracts. Later that day, army officials contacted both papers and criticised them for describing the dead men as “indigenous” people instead of “terrorists”, sources said on condition of anonymity for fear of reprisals. Since then, Prothom Alo the most widely read newspaper in the country with