Terming the incident involving journalist Rozina Islam unexpected, Awami League Joint General Secretary Mahbubul Alam Hanif yesterday said the country would benefit if stern actions were taken against corrupts instead of filing cases against journalists.
Rozina, a senior reporter of Bangla daily Prothom Alo, was confined to the health ministry at the Secretariat on Monday for around five hours before being handed over to police.
Later that day, a deputy secretary of the Health Services Division filed a case against the journalist with Shahbagh Police Station under the Official Secrets Act.
Speaking to The Daily Star, Hanif, a lawmaker from Kushtia-3 (Sadar), condemned the incident.
He said what happened to Rozina at the Secretariat was very saddening and unexpected.
Hanif said the media is the mirror of the society through which people get the accurate picture of the country. It also acts as a supporting force for the government.
Therefore, there should be good relations between the government and the media, but the corrupt people cause disruptions to this at times, he added.
'JUSTICE WILL BE SERVED'
Meanwhile, Law Minister Anisul Huq has assured that justice will be served for senior journalist Rozina Islam.
"The government does not want that there will be any distance between journalists and the government over any issue. If there is any confusion in this regard, the government will take steps to dispel it. Journalist Rozina Islam must get justice," he said.
The minister was briefing reporters last night after a meeting with journalist leaders, led by Jatiya Press Club President Farida Yasmin, at his Gulshan residence in capital.
Anisul said the court will decide on granting bail to Rozina. "I cannot interfere in the court proceedings. I will ask the prosecution to enquire about the case filed against Rozina Islam."
The law minister told the meeting that he would talk to the jail authorities so that Rozina was not harassed or tortured in prison.
Farida at the meeting demanded the law minister take necessary steps to withdraw the case filed against Rozina, release her immediately and conduct an inquiry into Monday's incident to identify those officials who kept the senior journalist confined, misbehaved and assaulted her at the Secretariat.
The journalist leaders demanded carrying out the probe by officials from any other ministry except that of health.
They described the incident of assaulting and misbehaving with Rozina to the law minister.