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Govt measures against Amar Desh & 2 TV temporary : Inu

Dhaka, 04 June, Abnews : Information Minister Hasanul Haq Innu said the government’s measures against the Daily Amar Desh, Diganta TV and Islamic TV are temporary and such actions have no relations with freedom of the media. The measures the government has taken against the Daily Amar Desh, Diganta TV and Islamic TV are temporary and the authorities have no plan to cancel the declaration of the Daily Amar Desh, the information minister told the House while responding to a point of order of BNP lawmaker Shahid Uddin Chowdhury Anne.

Standing on the point of order, Anne said restricting the publication of the Daily Amar Desh and airing programmes of private TV channels ‘Diganta TV’ and ‘Islamic TV’ is against the spirit of the freedom of speech and democracy and urged the information ministry to take necessary steps to allow the Daily Amar Desh to resume its publication and ‘Diganta TV’ and ‘Islamic TV’ their broadcasts.

He said the government has a strong belief in the freedom of expression and it is committed to upholding and ensuring this freedom for flourishing democratic practice in the country. Over 314 daily newspapers are regularly published in the country and the present government gave new licenses for radio and TV channels, he added.

As there is no restrictions on publication of the Daily Amar Desh, the newspaper authorities can publish it from any press following the existing rules, he said, adding that the press of the daily Amar Desh has been kept under lock and key because of some objectionable activities. The government has taken temporary measures against the Daily Amar Desh, Diganta TV and Islamic TV for violation of laws, hurting religious sentiment of the people and spreading false and provoking information.

About the Daily Amar Desh, Innu said this newspaper published a picture of changing the gilaf (cover) of Holy Kaaba with a caption that procession was held in Mecca for the release of Sayeede. When the ministry sought explanation about it, the Amar Desh authorities confessed their fault and beg pardon. The Amar Desh also violated the ICT Act by publishing personal discussion over Skype about the International Crimes Tribunal.

Innu said the editor of the Daily Amar Desh was arrested in connection with a case filed under the ICT Act and his arrest has no relations with the freedom of the media or freedom of the expression. About the Diganta TV and Islamic TV, the information minister said these two TV channels aired provoking news about the meeting of Hefazat-e-Islam on the May 6. They also hurt the religious sentiment of the people by airing false news, he added.

The information ministry served show cause notices on these two TV channels and the authorities have already given reply. Investigation is going on and the ministry would take steps after the completion of the investigation, he added.



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