The government is likely to place two bills on media -- Media Employees Act (Conditions of Service) 2018 and Broadcast Act -- at the third session of the Jatiya Sangsad, said Information Minister Dr Hasan Mahmud yesterday.
“We would not be able to place these two bills in parliament in the session beginning tomorrow [today]. But we hope to place the bills in the next [3rd] session,” he said at a meeting with Broadcast Journalists’ Association (BJA) leaders at the secretariat.
The information ministry has already finalised the draft of the two laws on protecting media employees and broadcast media, and sent those to the law ministry for vetting, Hasan said.
“We talked to the law ministry over quick vetting of the laws. We hope they will do so. We will place the bills in parliament after the cabinet’s approval,” the minister said, adding that
once the bills are passed in parliament, security of journalists, including job security, will be protected.
Millions of taka are being laundered through advertisements in foreign channels, creating a financial crisis in domestic channels, Hasan said, adding that it has created problems in paying salaries to journalists.
In many cases, news sections are being shut down, the minister said, adding that none of this would have happened if advertisements were not given to foreign channels.
Responding to a demand of journalist leaders, the minister said his ministry will cooperate in organising the Asia Summit.
Editor-in-Chief of GTV and sarabangla.net Syed Ishtiaque Reza and Broadcast Journalist Center Chairman Rezwanul Haque and its member secretary Shakil Ahmed were present at the meeting, among others.