PM urges not to publish news that hampers country’s image
Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina today urged the journalist community not to publish any such news or criticize in such a way so that the country’s advancement and image are hampered. “Don’t publish any such news that will malign the country’s image and hamper its ongoing advancement,” she said.
The Premier made the remarks while distributing cheques of financial assistance worth about Tk 3.41 crore to 438 sick, insolvent and injured journalists and their family members at her office Ganabhaban in the capital on Monday (July 10). Sheikh Hasina said she always welcomes constructive criticism from media outlets so that we can correct ourselves.
“Constructive news help to the government to run the country,” she said. The Prime Minister said the media will definitely criticize the government and enjoy freedom, but that should be done with due responsibilities and dutifulness. “I want that the advancement of Bangladesh is not hampered anymore due to irresponsible journalism,” she said.
The Prime Minister said everyone has the right to enjoy freedom, but they have to be responsible. “You will definitely enjoy freedom but you have to show responsibilities and dutifulness,” she said. Sheikh Hasina said her government believes in freedom of speech, saying, “The journalist community did not enjoy such freedom that they enjoyed in the last 14 years of the Awami League government.”
The freedom of the media that has given to the media will further flourish being the country transformed into a digital one. The Prime Minister said after coming to the government in 1996, there was only one television channel, BTV and now her government has given licenses to numerous TV channels and newspapers on the private sector mainly to create employment.
The Prime Minister recalled that the journalists were inhumanly tortured during the BNP-Jamaat government. She continued that the journalists were not allowed in the southwestern region in 2001 soon after the BNP-Jamaat came to power as they inhumanly tortured the Awami League leaders and supporters like the Pakistani occupation forces during the Liberation War.
The Premier said her government is going to bring private television channels under the wage board. She called upon the media owners to donate money to the Bangladesh Journalist Welfare Trust. The Premier said her government can arrange for a piece of land as the journalists wanted to build houses for themselves or can give government flats on installments.
She said they have taken housing projects to bring every home and landless people under the scheme free of costs following the footsteps of the Father of the Nation. The Premier initiated the BJWT fund in 2014 by giving at amount of Taka five crore as seed money. She, later, gave Taka 20 crore more as seed money.
So far, some Tk 40 crore was distributed among 13,510 journalists from the fund. Information and Broadcasting Minister Hasan Mahmud presided over the function, while Information and Broadcasting Secretary Humayun Kabir Khandaker spoke on the occasion.
Senior journalists, leaders of different journalist unions including BFUJ and DUJ and concerned officials were present at the function.