Star editor gets bail in Faridpur
Mahfuz Anam, editor and publisher of The Daily Star, secured bail in a Tk 50-crore defamation case in Faridpur yesterday.
Senior Judicial Magistrate Mohammad Hamidul Islam passed the order after Mahfuz Anam appeared before the court and sought bail.
The court also set May 29 for the next hearing.
Zahid Bepari, an additional public prosecutor of Faridpur, filed the suit on February 22. Later, the court asked the Star editor to appear before it yesterday. It is one of the 79 cases that have been filed against Mahfuz Anam in 53 districts since February 9. The cases include 17 pleas for bringing sedition charges against him. The complaints cite Tk 1,32,811 crore as losses incurred due to “defamation”.
The case spree began after the editor at a TV talk show on February 3 made an introspective comment about a lapse in his editorial judgment in publishing some reports, based on information given by the Taskforce Interrogation Cell during the 2007-08 caretaker government rule, without being able to verify those independently.
The cases have drawn condemnation from local and foreign journalists and their unions as well as human rights bodies.