Tribune News Service
Kolkata, June 13
The CPI(M) on Wednesday condemned the killing of Bangladeshi communist-activist and rationalist blogger Shahjahan Bachhu by religious fundamentalists.
"Bachchu, local leader of Communist Party of Bangladesh (CPB), was shot death by religious fundamentalists in Bangladesh. He was former general secretary of a district unit CPB, publisher of Bishakha Prakashani and a rationalist blogger. We strongly condemn this heinous act," CPI(M)'s West Bengal unit said in a tweet.
In another tweet, CPI(M) Lok Sabha member Md Saleem said, "Racist attack on rationalists across South Asia by fundamentalist-bigot-fanatics taking different forms using various cloaks. #ShahjahanBachchu."
According to the Daily Star, a popular Dhaka daily, Bachchu (55) was shot by assailants in Sirajdikhan upazila of Munshiganj district on Monday evening.
The assailants riding two motorcycles fired at Bachchu at Kakaldi intersection in the upazila town around 6,40pm, leaving him dead on the spot, the paper quoted a police official as saying.
In a statement, International Federation of Journalists general secretary Anthony Bellanger, said, "The IFJ is deeply saddened by the cold-blooded murder of blogger and publisher Shahjahan Bachchu on Munshiganj district of Bangladesh. Such attacks on writers and publishers in full public view have a chilling effect on freedom of expression are a stark reminder of the lack of security for journalists and writers. The IFJ demands immediate action to arrest and punish those responsible for the killing of Shahjahan Bachchu".
Bachchu was also acting editor of weekly Amader Bikrampur.
Murderous assaults on secular bloggers and writers are not new in Bangladesh. The horrific murder of Ahmed Rajib Haider in February 2013 by machete-wielding assailants with links to a banned extremist outfit, was one of the first loud messages that free-thinkers would not be tolerated.
The ruthless killing of blogger Avijit Roy in Dhaka on February 26, 2015 shocked the world, as did the hacking to death in October 31 the same year, of Roy's publisher Faisal Arefin Dipan, who ran Jagriti Prokashoni.
The dramatic killing of Nazimuddin Samad (28) on April 6, 2016, in the crowded Sutrapur area by suspected Islamist militants sent shock waves through the nation. Notably, none of the masterminds of these killings have been brought to book.
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