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DRU: Home minister cannot avoid responsibility when attackers roam free

  • Published at 02:47 pm August 9th, 2018
DRU protest
DRU members holding a banner as part of the demonstration organized on ThursdayMehedi Hasan

The journalists’ 72-hour deadline to arrest the attackers expires on Saturday

Dhaka Reporters Unity (DRU) President, Saiful Islam, has said Home Minister Asaduzzaman Khan Kamal cannot avoid his responsibility for the fact that those attacking media professionals during the student movement for safe roads, roam free.

He made the comment at a human chain demonstration held at DRU’s Segunbagicha office premises on Thursday at noon, to protest the recent attacks on journalists in Dhaka’s Jigatola area.

“If the administration can identify and contain militants in the country, why is it not possible to arrest the attackers whose photos were published by various media outlets?” he questioned, saying: “The home minister cannot ward off being responsible for the attackers walking freely.”

 “If the attackers are not arrested and brought to book soon, will we consider going back to the days when lack of justice was the culture?” Saiful added.

He hoped, there will be visible progress on arresting the culprits and he also urged the prime minister to take necessary measures to ensure the security of journalists since she had previously warned of violence with the general elections nearing. 

Expressing solidarity with the 72-hour ultimatum given by several journalist organizations such as the Bangladesh Federal Union of Journalists (BFUJ), and the Dhaka Union of Journalists (DUJ), Saiful warned of a tougher countrywide concerted movement if the attackers are not arrested immediately.

Demanding exemplary punishment for the culprits, Saiful said the DRU will submit a memorandum to both the home minister and the information minister after the 72-hour deadline for arresting the attackers expires this Saturday.

Sakhawat Hossain Badsha, former president of DRU, expressing disappointment with the delay in arresting the attackers, said: “I believe the culprits were not from another planet. Then why the delay in booking them?”

“There is no scope to spare the offenders and if the latter are not brought to justice, there will be tougher programs,” he warned. 

The human chain was addressed among others by DRU General Secretary, Syed Shukur Ali Shuvo, and Bangladesh Federal Union of Journalists (BFUJ) Executive Member, Khairuzzaman Kamal, among others.