PEN Bangladesh condemns murder of secular writer Bachchu

Bangla Tribune Desk
Published : 18:29, Jun 12, 2018 | Updated : 18:40, 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 BachchuCondemning the killing of secular writer Shahzahan Bachchu, PEN Bangladesh — the local chapter of PEN International, urged the government for actions to promote and protect the right of freedom of expression.
Unidentified assailants in Munshiganj shot dead Bachchu, who owned the Dhaka-based publishing house Bishakha Prakashani, on Monday in his native village of Kakaldi in Sirajdikhan Upazila.
Bacchu, who owned the Dhaka-based publishing house Bishakha Prakashani, was attacked Monday afternoon in his native Sirajdikhan Upazila, said police.
Police said he was at the local pharmacy when the attackers, who came on two motorcycles, hurled bombs before dragging Bachchu out and shooting him at point-blank range.
PEN BangladeshIn a statement on Tuesday, PEN Bangladesh urged the government to attach the highest priority to the investigation into the assassination,
“PEN Bangladesh believes that opinions and ideas can only be countered by opinions and ideas, and not by stifling thoughts,” reads the statement signed by President Syed Manzoorul Islam and Secretary General Mohammad Moheuddin.
Bachchu, known for his free-thinking works, was a former leader of the Munshiganj district unit of the Communist Party of Bangladesh (CPB).
It was not immediately clear who were behind the killing, but police said quoting the family that he was threatened to death a week ago by suspected Islamist militants.
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.