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Friday, November 18, 2011

Why Mahfuz Anam's job is easy?

In a bid to encourage me to learn better English, my late grandfather used to urge me to read the Daily Star on a regular basis from when I was as young as 15. So having read the leading English daily of Bangladesh for an ardent 17 years, I have now realised that the job of the editor Mr. Mahfuz Anam has been very easy – almost tantamount to a walk in the park (Ramna, Chandrima etc.). A few hypotheses to support my assumptions are here.

Use of copy-paste, find-replace
I am sure the Daily Star editor makes use of these computer functions since their establishment in 1991. It seems that nothing much have changed to report differently regarding the following issues from 1991 till 2011. So what Mahfuz Sir does is simply have a cycle of these stories to appear on his prestigious daily on a programmed basis, changing the names of actor involved, dates, locations as they happen–
  • Political accusations and counter accusations by Bangladeshi polishitians*,
  • Allegations of corruptions, election riggings
  • Highway road accidents, people being killed on roads
  • Capsizing of launches, ferries,
  • Indian border guards killing Bangladeshis on a retail basis
  • Bangladeshi cricket team posting success every 5 years, taking pride in glorious defeats in between
  • Stock market nose-diving, being manipulated
  • Power cuts, price inflation, pollution, traffic jams in Dhaka
  • Happy cross-firing by RAB bhais
  • Plight of Bangladesh manpower abroad
  • Bangladesh exception delight (Bangladeshis climbing mountains, winning Nobel prizes, returning money from New York cabs, increased remittances, garments export etc.)
 It is an assumption that these patterns of news are ready-made and appear ever since Mahfuz Sir have been reporting us the facts through his newspaper. It is also assumed that Mr. Mahfuz Anam uses a custom-made software called Eternal Bangla news 2.0 to automatically replace BNP with Awami League every 5 years, to refresh dates, locations dynamically across all the above identified general themes on Bangladesh.

Special slot for foreign news
There are arrangements in place with Reuters, AFP and the like so that international news comes in and gets printed in the Daily Star as they happen. It is assumed that this could be one area where Mahfuz Anam could spend some of his editorial skills to cipher out the good from the bad, the interesting from the dull and boring. So much is changing and improving in the world, so he must be kept busy informing his readers of the same.

Jokes apart, I think what Daily Star has been doing since its inception is a great service to us readers and to the nation as a whole. I just feel how frustrating it could be at times for them to keep reporting the same gloomy news on a few topics of our concern over and over again. I wish Mahfuz Sir becomes Sir Mahfuz one day and makes us proud.

*Polishitians (Poly-shit-ians : Bangladeshi politicians who produce a lot of shit through their words and works)

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