Bangladesh Centre for Development, Journalism and Communication (BCDJC)

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:: BCDJC ::

June 2006


Attack on May 29 Journalists' Meet in Kushtia, Police yet to record case

Kushtia police is yet to record a complaint filed on June 7 by The Observer editor and former BFUJ president Iqbal Sobhan Choudhury following the attack on a journalists' convention in Kustia on May 29 by a group of unruly ruling party leaders and activists. Two local lawmakers were allegeldy behind the attack that aimed at postponing the convention.

When contact, Ahsan Habib, Officer-In-Charge (OC) in Kushtia Sadar police station said, "I informed the matter to the higher authorities and will act as per their directives". In the complaint, Iqbal accused two ruling party lawmakers Sahidul Islam and Syed Mehedi Ahmed Rumi and their followers for foiling the convention in Kushtia public library ground.

Iqbal and 25 other journalists were injured in the attack allegedly carried out at the behest of the two lawmakers. Over 500 journalists from southwestern districts and from the capital gathered at the venue for the convention. As the convention began at about 11:30am , over 100 BNP cadres equipped with lethal weapons swooped on the meeting from nearby party office and beat the journalists.

Later, Iqbal Sobhan Choudhury sent a written statement to Kushtia Sadar police station on June 7 requesting the OC to record it as a case. Sahidul, a lawmaker from of Kushtia-2 constituency (Mirpur-Bheramara) filed a case with Bheramara police station against three journalists on May 9.

In his case Sahidul alleged that Hasan Zahid, staff correspondent Daily Manabjamin and Kushtia correspondent of RTV; Al-Mamun Sagar, staff correspondent of ATN Bangla and Kushtia correspondent of Daily Jugantror; Munshi Tarikul Islam, Kushtia correspondent of Daily Samakal and Chennel I went to his Bheramara residence on May 2 and demanded Tk 50,000 from him.

Since then, police raided heir thouses several times and they are on the run. Local daily Andoloner Bazar published a series of report on Alleged misdeeds of MP Sahidul Islam. Its editor Manzur Ehsan Choudhury also fled home and publication of the daily was stopped.


30 journalists hurt while covering Oppositions' Dhaka Seige

On 11 June at least 30 journalists were injured when they were covering an opposition-induced ‘Dhaka siege' program that marred by a series of clashes between the opposition workers and the law enforcers.

Besides, police also beat photojournalists and reporters of different news media at a number of troubled spots while they were on duty despite showing their identity cards. Fifteen journalists were hurt at Kanchpur, eight at Tongi bridge, three at Shankar area of Dhanmondi, one at Gabtali, one at Russell Square in Dhanmondi and one at Moghbazar during the siege programme, media reports said.

At Tongi, police even swooped on the journalists who staged an instant sit-in protest on the street at Abdullahpur, outskirts of the capital, at about 1:00 PM protesting the assault on three newsmen by police. At first, police beat up Manabjamin reporter Nizamuddin Bipul, Jugantar reporter Kazal Hazra and Desh Bangla reporter Patrick D Costa at Tongi bridge.

They then attacked the journalists observing the sit-in at the same spot and beat up Desh Bangla reporter Jamaluddin, Noya Diganta photographers Emshid Sharif and Abdul Baten, Samakal photographer Golam Mostafa and Bangla Vision's Abdul Rahim.

The law enforcers charged batons on Boishakhi TV cameraman Khairul Bashar Dipu at Shankar in Dhanmondi. When reporter of the channel Hasanul Jamal Saki and Samakal photographer Sohrab Alam protested the incident, they also came under police assault. The Daily Star photographer Sheikh Enamul Huq received severe injury in his head while he was taking snaps during the clashes between police and opposition workers at Russell Square at Dhanmondi at around 10:15 AM. At Gabtoli, Prothom Alo photographer Khaled Sarkar was hurt during the clashes between police and opposition workers.

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