15 editors concerned
Editors of 15 national dailies yesterday demanded reopening of the press of daily Amar Desh, freeing its acting editor Mahmudur Rahman and allowing the broadcast of Diganta and Islamic TVs.
In a joint statement, they also demanded withdrawal of cases against Mahmudur's mother and the editor of daily Sangram.
Expressing deep concern at the ongoing government actions on the media, they termed it an alarming threat to press freedom.
“This type of incidents will undoubtedly weaken the foundations of democracy,” said the statement.
The arrest of an editor, stopping the publication of a newspaper and the broadcast of two TV channels are sending a negative message to the world about Bangladesh's democratic values, culture, and tolerance. The actions were “unexpected” and “upsetting”, it added.
The editors further said, “As an unavoidable outcome of these actions, many journalists will be thrown into unemployment, which will not be favourable for the image of an elected and democratic government.”
The signatories are: Mahbulul Alam of the Independent; Golam Sarwar of Samakal; Mahfuz Anam of The Daily Star; Motiur Rahman of Prothom Alo; Riazuddin Ahmed of News Today; AMM Bahauddin of Inqilab; Alamgir Mohiuddin of Naya Diganta; Motiur Rahman Chowdhury of Dainik Manabjamin; Moazzem Hossain of Financial Express; Nurul Kabir of New Age; Imdadul Haq Milon of Kaler Kantho; Mostafa Kamal Majumder of The New Nation; Noim Nizam of Bangladesh Protidin; acting editor of daily Sangbad Moniruzzaman and Saiful Alam, executive editor of daily Jugantor.