Secular writer-publisher Bachchu shot dead

Munshiganj Correspondent
Published : 21:58, Jun 11, 2018 | Updated : 18:23, Jun 12, 2018

Writer and publisher Shahzahan Bachchu was the former general secretary of the Munshiganj unit of Communist Party of Bangladesh. FACEBOOK/writer and publisher Shahzahan Bachchu

Unidentified assailants in Munshiganj have shot dead writer and publisher Shahzahan Bachchu.
Bacchu, who owned the Dhaka-based publishing house Bishakha Prakashani, was attacked Monday afternoon in his native Sirajdikhan Upazila, said police.
A free-thinking writer, Bachchu was a former general secretary of the Munshiganj chapter of the Communist Party of Bangladesh (CPB).
Munshiganj’s Superintendent of Police Md Zayedul Alam said that the killing was reported around 6:30pm in Kakaildi village near the Sirajdikhan Upazila town.
“Witnesses said that he was chatting with locals at a pharmacy when five men on two motorcycles arrived at the scene. They hurled bombs before dragging Bachchu out from the pharmacy and shot him,” he told Bangla Tribune.
It was not immediately clear who were behind the killing, but senior police officer Alam said, “Bachchu’s wife told us that her husband mentioned of receiving death threats a week ago. But he had not approached the police for security.”
Munshiganj CPB President SM Kamal claimed that Bachchu, known for his free-thinking works, was a target of radicals. “It was a pre-planned killing,” he told Bangla Tribune.
A team of counter-terror police from Dhaka have reached the crime scene. An official of the Counterterrorism Unit said they suspect militants’ hand.
Deaths of secular writers, bloggers, online activists and a publisher in attacks by suspected Islamist militants shook Bangladesh for months following the 2015 killing of US-based writer-blogger Avijit Roy near the TSC in the Dhaka University campus.
His publisher Faisal Arefin Dipan, who ran Jagriti Prokashoni, was hacked to death on Oct 31 the same year inside his publishing house in the capital’s Shahbagh.
Hours before Dipan’s murder, terrorists attacked publisher Ahmedur Rashid Tutul of Shuddhaswar Prakashani in his office in Dhaka’s Lalmatia. He, however, survived the attack.
Radical Islamist groups claimed credit for most of these attacks and the law enforcers have made several arrests in connection with the attacks.