PV Desk : Five local newspapers of Chattogram have stopped publication after the journalists laid siege to the homes of owners and editors demanding full payment of salaries and festival allowances before Eid-ul-Azha.
Bangla newspapers The Daily Azadi, the Daily Purbokone, the Suprobhat Bangladesh, the Dainik Purbodesh, and the Dainik Bir Chattogram did not hit the newsstands on Thursday and Friday.
The Chattogram Union of Journalists has expressed concerns over the decisions by the owners and editors to suspend the publication “indefinitely” when the newspaper industry is teetering amid the coronavirus outbreak.
Newspaper circulation dropped by around 90 percent in Chattogram when the government imposed a lockdown in late March to stem the spread of the virus.
The newspapers could not offset the losses after sales increased slightly following the end of the lockdown.
Some newspapers decided to pay the journalists half the Eid allowances, angering the media workers. CUJ later announced the programme to lay siege to the homes of owners and editors of four newspapers.
They began the demonstration by rallying outside the home of MA Maleque, the editor of The Daily Azadi, at Khalifapotti on Wednesday morning.
Deep in the night, the association of owners and editors, Chattogram Newspaper Alliance, decided to halt publication even after the journalists worked throughout Wednesday.
The journalists called off the programmes to lay siege to the homes of the editors of the Daily Purbokone and the Dainik Purbodesh on Thursday morning after the decision by the owners’ association.
No newspaper will be published in Chattogram at least until Tuesday due to the Eid holidays. It is unclear whether the newspapers will resume publication after the holidays.