PRESS CLUB ATTACK: Journalists’ leaders blame each other

Staff Correspondent

Journalist leaders of both factions backed by ruling Bangladesh Awami League and Bangladesh Nationalist Party on Monday blamed each other for Sunday’s attack on the National Press Club.
Bangladesh Federal Union of Journalists and Dhaka Union of Journalists factions backed by the AL and the BNP organised two rallies at the same time, with a close distance of twenty feet at the National Press Club.
Addressing their rally, the ruling party backed journalist leaders said that the BNP-baked journalists who were dominating the executive committee of the press club allowed outsiders on the premises for political purposes causing the attack on the club on Sunday.
Prime minister’s media adviser Iqbal Sobhan Chowdhury demanded that the non-political image of the National Press Club must be upheld.
The rally also demanded that the authority must take initiative by today to hoist the national flag at the club and to enrol eligible journalists in the club in 15 days.
BNP-baked journalist unions at their rally demanded immediate reopening of the media outlets closed by the government, release of acting Amar Desh editor Mahmudur Rahman, immediate identification of the killers of journalist couple Sagar Sarwar and Mehrun Runi and trial of killing of journalists including Sagar and Runi.
BNP-backed BFUJ faction president Ruhul Amin Gazi claimed that Iqbal Sobhan Chowdhury was involved in the Sunday’s attack.
BNP chairperson’s adviser Showkat Mahmud termed Iqbal ‘illegal’ member of the press club.
‘As per the charter of the press club he [Iqbal] is no more a member as he is doing another type of job,’ he said.
Both the factions also blamed each other for destroying the unified movement for justice in the killing of Sagar and Runi.
The rally organised by pro-AL journalists were also addressed by former press club general secretary Shafiqur Rahman and DUJ faction president Omar Faruque and general secretary Shaban Mahmud among others.
BNP-baked journalists’ rally was addressed, among others, by DUJ faction president Abdul Hai Shikder and journalist leader Abdus Shaheed.

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