Eminent fiction writer and literary critic Syed Manzoorul Islam was elected president of the new committee PEN Bangladesh while Mohammad Moheuddin was elected secretary general in the Executive Election Committee 2018-2020 at the organisation's 45th Annual General Meeting at La Vinci hotel on Sunday.
After the new committee was announced, Syed Manzoorul Islam said: “This is my first and last term as president. I wish to build PEN as a platform for the young generation.”
Election for the new committee was conducted by fiction writer Moinul Ahsan Saber and poets Asad Mannan and Shihab Shahariar. PEN Bangladesh's ex-president Farida Hossain and adviser Kazi Anis Ahmed, among others, were also present during the election.
In his speech, Kazi Anis Ahmed said: “The new committee will be the platform through which issues like freedom of expression and quality translation of Bengali literature will be upheld.”
For the post of vice president, Rabindra University Vice Chancellor Biswajit Ghose, writer Ahmed Reza and Maleka Ferdousi were elected with 62, 61 and 43 votes respectively. For the post of executive member, fiction writer Parvez Hossain, poet Shamim Reza, literary editors Rifat Munim and Zahid Sohag, and writer Zahanara Parveen were elected with 75, 75, 69, 68 and 62 votes respectively.
Candidates for all the other posts of the new committee were elected uncontested. Ferdousi Mahmud and Lovely Bashar were elected as joint secretary general; Anis Mohammad was elected treasurer; Shakira Parveen was elected publicity editor and Hamim Kamrul Haque librarian of the new committee.