7 more bloggers to be arrested: Home minister | The Daily Star
07:08 PM, April 03, 2013 / LAST MODIFIED: 11:44 PM, April 03, 2013

HURTING RELIGIOUS SENTIMENT

7 more bloggers to be arrested: Home minister

Govt committee identifies 11 bloggers

This April 2 photo shows three bloggers arrested for “writing derogatory content about Islam” at a press briefing at Detective Branch office in Dhaka. Photo: Palash Khan This April 2 photo shows three bloggers arrested for “writing derogatory content about Islam” at a press briefing at Detective Branch office in Dhaka. Photo: Palash Khan

The home ministry has identified 11 bloggers “who have hurt religious sentiment of Muslims through their writings”, Home Minister MK Alamgir has informed.

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“Four of them have so far been arrested while efforts are on to capture the others,” he told journalists after a high-profile meeting at the ministry on Wednesday.

Deputy Leader of the House Syeda Sajeda Chowdhury, Food Minister Abdur Razzaque, Awami League Joint General Secretary Mahbubul Alam Hanif, Shipping Minister Shahjahan Khan, Forests Minister Hasan Mahmud, State Minister for Law Qamrul Islam and State Minister for LGRD Jahangir Kabir Nanak were present at the meeting.

Details of the meeting that discussed the latest situation of the country could not be known immediately.

Police arrested blogger Asif Mohiuddin at Segunbagicha in the capital on Wednesday, a day after three others were held for posting “derogatory comments about Islam and Prophet Muhammad (pbuh)” on the Internet.

The arrests came amid strong criticism over the government role, which many termed as “submissive”, following some radical Islamist organisations’ threat of unleashing anarchy if “atheist bloggers are not hanged”.

Many think the arrests would add further to the growing frustration of the youths and online activists, who have been agitating since February 5 demanding death penalty of war criminals, over the government role.

In the night of January 13, some miscreants attacked Asif with knives as he was entering his office in Uttara, leaving him seriously injured. He had to stay in hospital for a month.

On Monday, police arrested four members of Ansarullah Bengali Team, a newly-launched militant organisation, from different parts of the city ‘for attempting to murder’ Asif.

In an overnight drive on Monday, law enforcers arrested three bloggers, including a Dhaka University student, from different areas of the capital on the same allegation.

Hours after the arrest, they were each placed on a seven-day remand in a case filed for making disparaging comments about Islam and the Prophet.

On February 15, blogger Ahmed Rajib Haider was brutally killed by miscreants in front of their Mirpur residence. Later, police arrested five youths in connection with the murder.

Radical Islamist groups have been campaigning against the Shahbagh movement initiated by the bloggers.

Hefajat-e Islam, a so-called Islamist organisation instrumental to this end, will march towards Dhaka on April 6 and have threatened of non-stop shutdown and letting loose 313 members of suicide squad if the government obstructs its march.

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