The Role of Media in Influencing Public Opinion on Violence Against Minorities: The Case of Ramu in Bangladesh
The article examines media portrayal of violence against religious minorities in Bangladesh and the ways in which it influences public opinion. Taking the 2012 violent attack on a Buddhist community at Ramu, Cox’s bazar as a case, the article demonstrates that the press media has its own ways, time, reasons and methods of how an incident of violence would be framed and presented. As the study reveals, the media have a vast role in shaping people’s perception about violence against minorities although the effect is closely related to the dimension of violence, identity of people and the credibility of media and government concerned. Yet, driven by vested interest and specific political ideologies, the media often publish biased and subjective news. The article suggests a greater role of media in sensitising people and influencing national strategies towards maintaining communal harmony.