On the occasion of the 75th anniversary of the Voice of America this year and the upcoming 60th anniversary of VOA’s Bangla service in January 2018, a three-day photo exhibition titled “Many Years, Many Stories” was unveiled on September 26, 2017, at the Edward Moore Kennedy Center in Dhaka, Bangladesh.
This was the first ever photo exhibition depicting the story of VOA Bangla. The exhibition illustrated the development and transformation of the service over six decades in operation. The photo exhibition was inaugurated by the Honorable Hasanul Huq Inu, the Information Minister of Bangladesh. In attendance were Roquia Haider, the Chief of VOA Bangla, Nicholas Papp, the Public Affairs Officer, U.S. Embassy Dhaka, as well as many multi-media journalists, VOA supporters and audience members and representatives of the VOA fan club in Bangladesh.
In his speech, the Information Minister characterized VOA as a whole and VOA Bangla, in particular, as an exceptional global media outlet serving its audiences with objective and reliable news and programs. During various crises in Bangladesh, the Voice of America played an important role in delivering the facts, noted the Minister. VOA Bangla has expanded its programs through affiliation agreements with radio and television partners throughout the country and is making great strides in audience engagement through social media, said Haider.
VOA’s Bangla Service provides news and information on radio, television, and the Internet. While the press in Bangladesh is becoming less restrictive, targeted violence occasionally limits the freedom of journalists. VOA’s main broadcasts reach Bangladesh and the Bangla-speaking Indian States of West Bengal, Assam, Tripura and several Arab and Muslim countries in the Middle East, North Africa, and Europe, as well as Southeast Asia where Bangladeshi workers live. VOA Bangla’s radio programs on medium wave and local FM affiliates reach an estimated 14 million listeners weekly. In addition to the radio programs, the Bangla Service has various weekly television shows and a significant presence on the Internet.