Development Media Limited
As happened elsewhere, media—newspaper, television, radio, online portal and social networks such as facebook, twitter and others included—now-a-days hugely influence everything in Bangladesh—from politics to government’s development outlook, through building up public opinion. Many of the development initiatives cannot be implemented due to mishandling of the media, which could instead work as leverage, if properly directed with proper information and the probable impacts of a given project. For instance, giving India the transit facilities had been a highly sensitive among the people for decades as the media were steered to portray the issue in a negative way.
So, media landscape matters for any development initiative of the government, especially for big ventures that would affect huge number of people. The mainstream media as a whole are focused on some selected issues such as politics, crime, seminars, symposia, foreign delegations’ tours and others, brushing aside innumerable the development projects dotted across the country.
Lacking media attention on development projects also results in wastage of public money, and subsequently the sufferings of the people. For instance, the Musapur Closure Project on Feni river was estimated to be costing around Tk 14 crore in 2007-08. The wrong selection of contractors coupled with alleged corrupt practices of the water development board officials made the project uncertain. The delays have caused huge sufferings for the people living around the area of Feni river, also multiplied the cost of the project that is yet to be completed in by the end of 2014. The government November 2014 has approved a proposal to complete the same project costing around Tk 194 crore—around 14 times higher than the preliminary cost.
Local people say the project could have been finished in time had there been media focus on the project that would stop wastage of the public money and reduce people’s sufferings.
Considering the critical role of the media in deciding the fate of the development projects, we, the Development Media Limited, a platform of dedicated professionals such as development workers, journalists, consultants, academics, researchers, students, think the media be associated with the development initiatives for a sustainable uplift projects.
Whatever we do is targeted to developments, be it economic, political or social. Development Media Limited is an organisation dedicated to work on issues that matter in everyday life. As the governments, international and national donors and local non-governmental organisations and private entities have relentlessly been working to improve the condition of the people, Development Media tires to cater every possible support and services that are needed to make those endeavors success.
Manned with a pool of researchers, journalists, professionals, experts and thinkers, the organisation conducts need-based social researches and campaigns to help strike better development policies for Bangladesh with nearly 160 million people living on a small piece of land. The organisation initiates debates from time to time on development issues as Bangladesh is still on a crossroad 42 years after its independence. Beside its main products of news and information, Development Media conducts trainings for different groups of professionals to enhance capacities at their respective fields as the organisation firmly believes targeted training is always needed for betterment in career developments.
Development Media owns an online newspaper, www.newsnextbd.com, published from Dhaka in both English and Bangla to provide with real time coverage on events across the globe. The newspaper tries to go in-depth of every issue that matters in public life. Working with journalists and journalism training is our priority.
The organisation has a long-term plan of launching of a magazine to be fully dedicated to development issues, with thorough analysis of the situation at the grassroots coupled with highlighting the pros and cons of any development initiatives. Analysis of development dynamics will be included in the magazine, and will incorporate articles thought provoking for the policy makers, development actors, rights activists.
A total of 12 issues a year of the magazine will contain wide range of matters to generate food for thought of the people concerned. The magazine will someday be at the position of development watchdog of the country and a good platform for development journalism as well.
The mission of Development Media is to help improve the quality of lives of Bangladeshi people who have still been in a transitional society. These people need many things – from education to social services -- to provide with for living a dignified life through policy intervention. The organisation is pledge-bound to make the difference in a reasonable time through sharing of knowledge. Its vision is to see Bangladesh a just and equitable democratic society.