BNP on Saturday denounced the arrest of senior journalist Shafik Rehman saying it is the latest example of suppressing divergent views by the government. Speaking at a press briefing at the party’s Nayapaltan central office, BNP senior joint secretary general Ruhul Kabir Rizvi also threatened that their party will announce a harsher action programme if Shafik Rehman and Gazipur city mayor MA Mannan are not released immediately. Dhaka, unb news agency reported.
Earlier, in the morning, detectives arrested journalist Shafik Rehman, former editor of the Bangla daily Jaijaidin, from his residence in the city’s Eskaton Garden area. Besides, law enforcers arrested Gazipur City Corporation mayor MA Mannan from Kaliakoir upazila of Gazipur on Friday night. BNP Secretary General Mirza Fakhrul Islam Alamgir also strongly protested the arrest of the senior journalist. Talking to reporters while visiting a fire-hit area ‘Goalpara’ under Thakurgaon municipality, Fakhrul said the journalist was arrested as the government wants to gag people’s voice. He said this incident has proved that there is no freedom of expression in the country. The BNP leader also said the arrest of a noted journalist in such a manner has also exposed that now there is no democracy in Bangladesh. Demanding immediate release of Shafik Rehman, Fakhrul urged the government to ensure people’s right of expression and free thinking. Besides, Rizvi said the government arrested Shafik Rehman as he used to write against its all misdeeds, injustice and repression without any fear. He also said the government arrested the senior journalist to hush up its failure in all fronts.