Govt gagging Amar Desh: management

 

Amar Desh management on Monday alleged the government has created hurdles, including sealing its press, in publication of the newspaper.

Newspaper’s Executive Editor Syed Abdal Ahmed made the allegation at a press briefing three days after the arrest of its Acting Editor Mahmudur Rahman and sealing off its press by the law enforcers.

Asked if the broadsheet’s publication was being stopped, the newspaper’s officials did not give any direct answers at the briefing.

They said Amar Desh would take the issue to the Supreme Court.

Abdal said, “Although the government didn’t revoke the declaration, it took all steps, including illegally sealing the press, to make sure that it does not get published.”

“The government has stopped publication of the widely circulated and popular newspaper by sealing off its press,” he said.

Police arrested Mammudur Rahman on Apr 11 on charges of sedition and for publishing in his newspaper an alleged Skype conversation of an ICT judge and an expatriate legal expert. Law enforcers sealed its press that very day.

Lawyer for Amar Desh Masum Ahmed Talukder said, “Amar Desh declaration is lawful and reserved through an order by the Supreme Court’s Appellate Division. What the district magistrate and police have been doing is actually contrary to an order of the highest court.”

Police also arrested several people when Amar Desh was being printed in the Jamaat-e-Islami’s mouthpiece Daily Sangram’s press on Saturday.

A case has been filed against Sangram’s Editor for unlawfully printing Amar Desh.

Amar Desh was published till Sunday after the lockdown of its press, as Monday was a holiday for the press.

“The printing of Amar Desh in Al-Falah printing press is not illegal. Police will do the same thing if measures are taken to print the newspaper at another press. That is why Amar Desh is not being published.”

The Supreme Court would be immediately informed about the government’s obstructions to the publishing of Amar Desh, the lawyer said.

“It can’t be said that Amar Desh has been closed. But the government paid no heed to the law and locked its press. The lock has not been sealed yet. It would have had a seal if the process had come through a court of law,” said Masud Ahmed Talukder, also a BNP leader, in reply to a query.

He said more than 500 families of journalists, officers and other staff members were living in uncertainty due to the government’s move.

Speaking about the arrest of Acting Editor Mahmudur Rahman and his alleged mistreatment at the hands of law enforcers, Syed Abdal Ahmed said, “The constitutional ways to express opinions are being obstructed through the oppressive and fascist measures of the government. This will severely damage the democratic process.”

Mahmudur Rahman served as an advisor to Khaleda Zia when she was the Prime Minister. The BNP Chairperson has condemned his arrest.

Source: Bd news24

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