Prothom Alo Editor Matiur Rahman led a team of newspaper owners to a meeting with Salman F Rahman, the prime minister’s adviser, at the latter’s office on Tuesday.
The NOAB team that included The Daily Star Editor Mahfuz Anam and several other owner-editors or their representatives congratulated the businessman and sought his support for the newspaper industry.
“We have had differences in the past,” Mahfuz Anam was quoted by sources to have told the PM’s adviser in a clear reference to his paper’s many stories over the years on Beximco Group, of which the business tycoon is a co-owner. “But there was no malice (towards you)”, Anam told Salman Rahman.
“We would probably agree to disagree on that,” Salman Rahman was quoted as saying in a terse reply.
Prothom Alo and Bhorer Kagoj during Matiur Rahman’s time as editor in the 1990s also ran similar stories on Beximco. In most cases, the two papers published stories on the same day with identical content.
The leaders of the Newspaper Owners Association of Bangladesh or NOAB congratulated the Beximco vice-chairman on his appointment as the prime minister’s adviser for private sector development and investment, the association said in a statement.
Besides NOAB president and daily Prothom Alo’s Matiur and Star’s Anam, industrialist and the Daily Samakal publisher AK Azad, The Independent Editor M Shamsur Rahman, Daily Manabzamin Chief Editor Matiur Rahman Chowdhury, Daily Bangladesh Pratidin Editor Naem Nizam and New Age publisher Shahidullah Khan Badal were in the team.
During the meeting at Beximco’s Gulshan office in Dhaka, they discussed the problems of the newspaper industry.
Salman assured the NOAB leaders that he would take up the issues with Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina for a quick solution to the problems.