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  • Tasneem released!

    by Sunny
    11th May, 2007 at 6:43 pm    

    Drishtipat have just alerted us that Tasneem Khalil has been released by the Bangladesh military. Thank you to our readers and comrades for their offers of help, I’m sure Tasneem will appreciate it. Good thing too because I was just getting started on building effigies of the military; they were shaping up to be quite hideous in typical Indian tradition.

    Update: And thanks to other blogging heavyweights including DesiPundit, Harry’s Place, Sepia Mutiny and Neha V for spread the word.
    You can read the statement by Daily Star editor here.

                  Post to del.icio.us

    Filed in: Civil liberties

    26 Comments below   |  

    Reactions: Twitter, blogs

    1. sonia — on 11th May, 2007 at 6:50 pm  

      what a relief! i really hope he’s okay

      though as someone pointed out on the drishtipat thread..what if he hadn’t worked for CNN, or tomorrow it might happen to someone else..who might not be so lucky.

      it’s a terrible state of affairs.!

      god can you imagine the state his wife must have been in.

    2. sid — on 11th May, 2007 at 6:50 pm  

      Update 9:11:33 pm BDT
      Tasneem is meeting with Mahfuz Anam in his office alone. Staffers in office say he looks physically ok, but badly shaken up. He is being taken home to his wife by DS staff after the meeting with MA.

      Update 8:11:15 pm BDT
      Tasneem Khalil released by joint forces. 24 hours after being picked up.

      Update 7:10:15 pm BDT
      Senior Daily Star office are huddled in office, including Mahfuz Anam. MA has released a statement. Excerpts: ” “I contacted the authorities concerned and was informed that him being questioned was not due to his journalistic work and had nothing to do with his functions at The Daily Star….In fact, it was because of the contents of his personal blog and some SMSs he had sent recently….Following my discussions with the authorities and because of the caretaker government’s commitment to the policy of freedom of the media, it was agreed that he would be released tonight.” Full statement is not online on DS website yet.

    3. Sunny — on 11th May, 2007 at 6:56 pm  

      Even if it his blog, that still means an attack on his freedom of speech to challenge the govt.

    4. sid — on 11th May, 2007 at 6:57 pm  

      Well, especially if it’s his blog, is my thinking.

    5. Halima — on 11th May, 2007 at 6:58 pm  

      Phew. Great news. Thanks fr updating Sunny.

    6. Ophelia Benson — on 11th May, 2007 at 7:09 pm  

      Great news indeed. I wish the Major Meeja would hurry up and report it though, so that we could source something in addition to Drishtipat.

    7. Don — on 11th May, 2007 at 7:21 pm  

      Wonderful, but sonia’s point is crucial. Had his profile been slightly less high …

    8. Ophelia Benson — on 11th May, 2007 at 7:30 pm  

      “but sonia’s point is crucial. Had his profile been slightly less high…”

      It may cut both ways, especially now that we can be mobilized so fast. Had his profile been less high perhaps they wouldn’t have gone after him; his profile perhaps both puts him at risk and makes silencing him too costly. It’s the same thing with doing that kind of work: it puts you at risk, but it also connects you with a network who will try to protect you.

      The good news is that it is really futile to try to silence a journalist if doing so causes a 100-fold expansion in the attention paid.

    9. Ramiie — on 11th May, 2007 at 7:35 pm  

      dont want to fart in a church but…
      I could never understand why “freedom of the press” is sacrosanct. Who says that governments cannot be libelled? and why cant they take steps to punish those who peddle misinformation? Some types of journalism can be political aggravation stirred up by envious, egotistical malcontents.I get mad when i read all this liberal handwringing over the collaring of a journalist. Its like crying over the deaths of potholers, or braves who dare to climb everest in the worst weather imaginable.
      just my two cents.

    10. leon — on 11th May, 2007 at 7:43 pm  

      Nice one!

      especially now that we can be mobilized so fast.

      Yep, that was good inspiring stuff and bodes well for the future.

    11. Don — on 11th May, 2007 at 7:49 pm  


      Two cents? You’re overcharging.

    12. Sunny — on 11th May, 2007 at 8:10 pm  

      It’s the same thing with doing that kind of work: it puts you at risk, but it also connects you with a network who will try to protect you.

      exactly, as Ophelia said. Tasneem is a good man and a very well intentioned human rights campaigner. It is only right we campaigned for him.

    13. William — on 11th May, 2007 at 9:15 pm  

      Phew that was quick, good stuff!

    14. Nyrone — on 11th May, 2007 at 9:22 pm  

      It woZ the Blog wot done it.

    15. Amit — on 11th May, 2007 at 9:51 pm  

      That’s fantastic news, just hope he’s ok!

    16. Mash — on 12th May, 2007 at 12:01 am  

      Sunny, thank you for jumping on this so quickly. Today I was very impressed with how the blogosphere responded. Thank you everyone here for your quick action. It was an exhausting, but rewarding, 24 hours.

    17. Sunny — on 12th May, 2007 at 1:45 am  

      Mash, pleasure. Drishtipat and yourself did most of the work in popularising this.

    18. douglas clark — on 12th May, 2007 at 2:04 am  

      Well, guys and gals, if we can do that for Tasneem, and I think media probably did, how about we mobilise for the others too? Shit, if they are that scared of soft power, what about the rest of the people they’ve arrested? They deserve support too.

      This should not be the end of the campaign.

    19. Rezwan — on 13th May, 2007 at 11:57 pm  

      Thanks Sunny and the Pickled Politics team (Bloggers, readers) for your support. It meant a lot to us. Hats off to you.

    20. Sid — on 14th May, 2007 at 1:38 am  

      Yeah, we came away with a lot from that experience. We learnt some valuable lessons and I think we won’t be seeing an end to this kind of thing. What a result. Thanks to everyone.

    21. sonia — on 14th May, 2007 at 10:48 am  

      yeah douglas has a good point. govts had better sit up and take note!!

    22. sonia — on 14th May, 2007 at 11:09 am  

      the diary cache isn’t updating..sid’s post on tasneem never showed up on the side!

    23. Jagdeep — on 14th May, 2007 at 12:14 pm  


    24. Refresh — on 15th May, 2007 at 12:46 am  

      I agree with Douglas. Pickled Politics should be running campaigns for all those held without trial, whether journalists or simply inconvenient to the authorities.

    25. mirage_u_c — on 15th May, 2007 at 8:44 pm  

      has anyone been in contact with tasneem? i hope he’s k but i havnt heard from him since his release…theres no activities on site aswell…could someone tell me what the situation is? is this how the f***ing impotent Military hushes ppl ??!! if hes been tortured, would he be the same “fearless” voice anymore?? has they given his posesionsback yet?? we drummed up a protest ok, but what happens now? don’t we hav a duty to our comrades like tasneem to follow up and find out whats happening?is he living in fear of being “extrajudicially killed” that he so vigirously tried to stop for all the victimised people??

    26. mirage_u_c — on 15th May, 2007 at 8:56 pm  

      Mr. MA basically disowned Khalil by his published comment. but as far as iv gathered, hes used tasneem as a mere pawn to serve his sick games…arrested without any warrants or charge for blogging???yeh rite!!!

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