Govt to finalise policy amid criticism

September 30, 2012

Online Mass Media
Govt to finalise policy amid criticism
The government will finalise an online mass media policy soon to ensure objectivity in news reports, Information Minister Hasanul Haq Inu said yesterday.
“The policy will not exert control on the freedom of the mass media. Rather it will help improve professional skills of journalists and ensure objectivity and
transparency,” he told a discussion, “Draft Online Mass Media Policy 2012: Review and Evaluation”, at Dhaka University (DU).
Department of Mass Communication and Journalism organised it in RC Majumdar Arts Auditorium.
The government move however has been criticised by journalists and the opposition BNP.
At a press briefing, BNP Acting Secretary General Mirza Fakhrul Islam Alamgir yesterday demanded cancellation of the draft policy, saying the government was trying to
establish control on online news media.
“The draft policy is contradictory to the spirit of democracy. The government wants to obstruct press freedom and creative spirit. That’s why we are opposing it,” he
told the briefing at BNP’s central office in the capital’s Nayapaltan.
CEO and Editor-in-Chief of Boishakhi TV Monjurul Ahsan Bulbul told another programme, “In an era of globalisation, instead of controlling the content of online news
portals, the government should focus on strengthening social values and educate the internet users at large.”
He was addressing a dialogue on Freedom of Expression on Internet, which eventually turned into a protest against the proposed guidelines, organised by Voice for
Interactive Choice and Empowerment (VOICE), an NGO, at Jatiya Press Club.

-With The Daily Star input

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