Bangladesh Pratidin launches Europe edition
Planning Minister AHM Mustafa Kamal and Bashundhara Group Chairman Ahmed Akbar Sobhan have called upon the Bangladeshi expatriates in the UK to invest in their motherland to expedite the achievement of its development goals.
They made the call while addressing the launching ceremony of Europe edition of Bangladesh’s highest circulated newspaper Bangladesh Pratidin.
Bangladesh Pratidin is one of the media outlets under East West Media Group Limited (EWMGL), which is a concern of Bangladesh’s leading business conglomerate Bashundhara Group. Before the Europe edition, Bangladesh Pratidin launched its America edition in March this year.
The event was held at Impression Events Venue in London on Friday. The Europe edition aims to make the Bangla broadsheet available at the doorsteps of Europeans, especially Bengali speaking people.
Planning Minister Mustafa Kamal, Bashundhara Group Chairman Ahmed Akbar Sobhan and Managing Director Sayem Sobhan Anvir, and Bangladesh Pratidin Editor and News24 CEO Naem Nizam were present on the occasion.
The event was attended by journalists, politicians, businessmen, litterateurs, cultural figures and Bengali community leaders.
The planning minister formally launched the publication while Bashundhara Group Chairman Ahmed Akbar Sobhan was the chief guest.
Noted journalist and writer Abdul Gaffar Choudhury, Tower Hamlets Mayor John Robert Biggs and Bangladesh’s Deputy High Commissioner in London Julker Nain attended the event as the special guests. Popular presenter in London Urmee Mazhar anchored the programme while Bangladesh Pratidin Editor Naem Nizam delivered the address of welcome.
Speaking on the occasion, the planning minister said Bangladesh has emerged as a role model for other countries for achieving record socioeconomic development. He called upon the expatriate people to invest in Bangladesh.
“The Awami League government led by Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina has rendered the tremendous development possible. He urged journalists to contribute to the continuation of the development pace. Constructive criticism about any act of the government is welcome but negative criticism is not acceptable at all,” he said.
He wished Bangladesh Pratidin grand success abroad as it secured at home.
Ahmed Akbar Sobhan thanked the journalist community in the UK for accepting Bangladesh Pratidin as their new member and assured them of support from Bashundhara Group.
“If any advertisement of Bashundhara Group is published in Bangladesh Pratidin’s Europe edition, other media outlets will not be deprived,” he announced.
He said Bangladesh Pratidin has secured the top position by publishing reports of the common people’s interest and highlighting true political, economic and social scenarios.
The Bashundhara Group chairman said the EWMGL media outlets not only highlight negative news but also focus on positive news. “The outlets have won public confidence by running true and undistorted news items.”
Urging expatriates to invest in their motherland, she said Bangladesh is the best country for entrepreneurs.
He criticised the last caretaker government led Dr Fakhruddin Ahmed for taking away Tk 1,200 crore (12 billion) from industrialists, businessmen and corporate houses.
“Bashundhara Group had to lose Tk 256 crore that time. The misdeeds of the caretaker government caused huge economic setback in the country, which may need 20 years to overcome it,” he said.
About the Europe edition of Bangladesh Pratidin, he said reports published in the daily will manifest positive achievements and problems of Bangladeshi expatriates in London and other parts of Europe.
The daily will also act as a bridge between resident and non-resident Bangladeshis, he hoped.
Naem Nizam, also CEO of News24 and FM band Radio Capital, said Bangladesh Pratidin started its journey with an objective to project the sufferings of the poor, destitute and deprived section of people. It has become the largest circulated daily due to people’s love. Bengali newspaper started to be published in Britain a century ago. Bengali-speaking people, including journalists, created a stable base in Begali journalism in the UK. Bangladesh Pratidin’s Europe edition is aimed to bring together people of Bangladesh and expatriates in Europe.
“The Europe edition of Bangladesh Pratidin will propagate sacrifice and struggle of Bangladeshis made in achieving country’s independence in 1971.
Tower Hamlets mayor John Robert Biggs differed from the view of some journalists that newspaper industry is facing a tough time. If any sector goes through competition, its success will be sustainable. Biggs said he reads English dailies to know the incidents of his country wherever he goes. Similarly, Bangladeshi expatriates will know Bangladesh better by reading reports of Bangladesh Pratidin.
Bangladesh’s Deputy High Commissioner in London Julker Nain congratulated Bangladesh Pratidin on launching Europe edition. Journalists and media outlets in Bangladesh are playing a vital role in safeguarding country’s democracy and building public consensus on important issues, he said.
London Bangla Press Club president Syed Nahas Pasha said Bangladesh Pratidin will be able to fulfil expatriate readers’ demand maintaining accuracy.
Weekly Desh magazine editor Taysir Mahmud said Bangladesh Pratidin has added a new feather to the glorious history of Bangla newspaper publications in Britain.
Channel-S television chief executive Taz Choudhury recommended publishing Bangladesh Pratidin daily to reach all non-resident Bangladeshis (NRBs) with more contents.
Weekly Shurma editor Farid Ahmed Reza hoped that the newspaper would play a vital role in establishing the rights of NRBs in Europe.
Weekly Patrika chief editor Helal Ahmed said Bangladesh Pratidin has taken a courageous move in this age of technology when printed newspapers are struggling for survival.
Weekly Janamat editor Nawab Uddin said Bangla newspapers have been contributing to expansion of native language instead of making commercial benefits.
Iqra Bangla television general manager Hasan Hafizur Rahman said Bangladesh Pratidin has opened a new window of opportunity for expatriate Bangladeshis in Europe.
Television One director Muhammad Golam Rasul expressed his hope that the newspaper would bring opportunities for expatriates through sharing stories online and in printed versions.
Ion television director Enam Ali said the widely circulated Bangladeshi newspaper will bring changes in stories about expatriates.
Channel-I Europe director Reza Ahmed Faisal Choudhury hoped that Bangladesh Pratidin would become a journal of British-Bangladeshis who have been maintaining remittance flow to the country.
Channel-S television chairman Ahmed us Samad Chowdhury appreciated all staff of the newspapers for taking the courageous step.