The Daily Prothom Alo (Bengali: প্রথম আলো) is a daily newspaper in Bangladesh, published from Dhaka in the Bengali language. It is the largest circulated newspaper in Bangladesh. According to National Media Survey 2018, conducted by Kantar MRB Bangladesh, Prothom Alo has more than 6.6 million daily readership online. According to Alexa Internet, an American web traffic analysis company, the online portal of Prothom Alo is the most visited Bangla website in the world.
|Founded||4 November 1998|
|Language||Bangla and English|
|Headquarters||Progoti Insurance Bhobon, 20-21, Kawran Bazar, Dhaka - 1215, Bangladesh|
|Circulation||525,001 (January 2013)|
Prothom Alo was founded on 4 November 1998. The circulation of Prothom Alo grew from an initial circulation of 42,000 to a circulation of a half million copies. The newspaper distinguished itself by its investigations of acid attacks and violence against women and pushing for tougher laws against the sale of acid. From press facilities located in Dhaka, Chittagong and Bogra, around 5,00,000 copies (as of March ‘2014) are circulated each day. According to National Media Survey 2018, everyday 6.6 million people read the print edition of Prothom Alo. The claimed readership of the online and print edition of this newspaper is 7.6 million.
A senior reporter of Prothom Alo, Rozina Islam, was detained for 5 hours in Bangladesh Secretariat after she went there to cover the health ministry on 17 May 2021. A case was filed against her by an official of Health Service Division under the Official Secrets Act. After filling of the case she was taken to Shahbagh Police Station. She was quizzed for 5 days in police remand. She was released upon bail from Kashimpur prison on 23 May 2021.
The online portal of Prothom Alo is the number 1 Bangladeshi website in the world. This portal is accessed by 1.6 million visitors from 200 countries and territories across the globe with 60 million pageviews per month. The e-paper site of Prothom Alo is also the Number 1 e-paper Web site of Bangladesh. From 160 countries, 465 thousand visitors access this website with more than 26 million pageviews per month. On average, each of the visitors stays for 20 minutes in this Web site. Based on Facebook fan following, Prothom Alo is one of the leading corporate houses of Bangladesh. Till November 2015, 6.75 Million people are following this newspaper through Facebook. This is the biggest FB Fan page for any organization in Bangladesh. Prothom Alo's blog (www.prothom-aloblog.com) provides a well-moderated platform where thousands of bloggers share their constructive thoughts on various contemporary issues. Moreover, nearly 700 thousand of the Prothom Alo app for various digital and mobile platforms have been downloaded as of October 2013. Altogether, printed and digital versions of Prothom Alo are being read by 12 million people from Bangladesh and 200 other countries and territories in a month.
Since its founding in 1998,[update] Matiur Rahman is the chief editor of the newspaper. He received the Ramon Magsaysay Award in 2005 in the category of Journalism, Literature and Creative Communication Arts.
Prothom Alo helped to popularise Mathematics in Bangladesh. It organized Mathematics Olympiad for the first time in Bangladesh in 2003. It is one of the main sponsors and the main organizer of Bangladesh Mathematics Olympiad.
Prothom Alo has been carrying on a campaign against acid violence, drugs, HIV/AIDS, and religious terrorism. For his contribution to this fight, the Philippines-based Ramon Magsaysay Award Foundation has described editor Matiur Rahman as ‘the guiding force in the positive changes in society and culture’ and in 2005 honored him with a Magsaysay Award, which is considered to be the 'Nobel Prize of Asia'. Rahman donated the prize money in equal proportion to the three funds that the Prothom Alo Trust has set up to help and support acid-burnt women, anti-drugs campaign, and persecuted journalists.
Prothom Alo, which belongs to Mediastar Ltd., has the following sister concerns:
Prothom Alo is often criticized for its liberal attitude. A cartoon by Arifur Rahman was published in Alpin about a jokes partly related with religion, caused protests against the Newspaper. A subsequent order was given from the government to ban the supplement. The editor of the Prothom Alo acknowledged the gaffe. In a statement released by Prothom Alo, the editor of Alpin, Matiur Rahman, apologized, expressing regret for publishing the cartoon. The cartoonist was jailed for six months and two days, he was arrested 18 September 2007 and released 20 March 2008.
In 2012, a High Court bench issued an injunction on the publication of Humayun Ahmed's political fiction Deyal at daily Prothom Alo's weekly Shahitto Samwiki on a Friday. The bench of Justice also asked the government and the writer to explain why they should not be directed to correct a part of the fiction for presenting a ‘distorted’ version of the assassination of the country's founding president Sheikh Mujibur Rahman and his minor son Sheikh Russel. The controversial part of the fiction was published by Bangla daily Prothom Alo in its 11 May issue. The chapters portrayed Khandker Moshtaque in a manner that he did not know about the killings beforehand.
Media related to Prothom Alo at Wikimedia Commons