Dhaka Tribune, a national English daily, began its journey yesterday with a gala launching ceremony at Pan Pacific Sonargaon hotel in the capital.
Speaking at the event, Editor Zafar Sobhan said: “As all newspapers must, we will criticise when we deem it necessary, and call the accountable to account. But our critiques will always come from a place of profound respect and from the belief that Bangladesh is capable of the very best and that Bangladeshis deserve the very best. This is the spirit that will infuse the Dhaka Tribune.”
Kazi Zahin Hasan, chairman of 2A Media Ltd, parent company of Dhaka Tribune said the English daily is set to raise the level of public policy debate.
Publisher Kazi Anis Ahmed said this is a great and necessary time to launch a newspaper in the country. “Indeed, we have seen first-hand how new media can electrify the political arena, and how a new generation of Bangladeshis is making its vigorous, unapologetic presence felt”, he said.
He added, “Heaven knows, at times we will hear from people's lawyers - though hopefully not from anyone's in this room - but we will make every effort to be fair, and to listen.”
“We also promise that we will bring you perspectives that perhaps no one else has brought you so far in Bangladesh.”
Kazi Shahid Ahmed, chairman of Gemcom Group, Professor Rehman Sobhan, the chairman of CPD and founder chairman of Grameen Bank, and Kazi Zahidul Hasan, founder and managing director of Kazi Farms formally launched the online version of Dhaka Tribune.
Dr Perween Hasan, former professor, department of Islamic history and culture, Dhaka University, Dr Rounaq Jahan, adjunct professor at Columbia University and Ameenah Ahmed member board of trustees, University of Liberal Arts (ULAB) cut the inaugural cake at the function.
The programme began with the Bangladeshi national anthem followed by a video promo associated with the paper’s marketing campaign, "glad to be Bangladeshi".
Chairman Kazi Zahin Hasan welcomed the guests in a brief speech while Publisher Kazi Anis Ahmed and Editor Zafar Sobhan elaborated on the paper's vision.
A number of politicians, senior government officials, entrepreneurs, academics, sports celebrities, diplomats, cultural personalities, editors and senior journalists of other newspapers, television channels and media houses attended the inauguration ceremony.