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May 30

Bdnews24 feeds the frenzy: Another yellow report against the Hefazat in Bangladesh

I seem to have lost the count of the times I have been berating the Daily Star and bdnews24 for their well planned acts to morally sabotage selected sections of the society, a.k.a yellow journalism. Bdnews24 has tried opening another avenue to insult Hefazat-e-Islam. This was via a news article saying, “‘Govt needs to act against 13-point”. It was an article that supposedly quotes Rashida Manjoo, a special rapporteur of the UN on Violence Against Women, when it said that “She says it is the government that needs to act against the 13-point charter of demands the Islamic organisation announced from a rally at Dhaka’s Motijheel on Apr 5.” 
The propaganda,
It followed that by a slew of propaganda, which is given as follows, “Their demands include curbing women’s right as they have asked to repeal the National Women Development Policy and a ban of free mixing of sexes in public. The hitherto little-known Hifazat, a madrasa-based organisation also demanded a ban on all imprudence, misconduct, adultery, lighting of candles in the name of individual rights and freedom of speech. That day not a single woman had turned up in the rally, but female journalists came under their attack when they went there to cover their event, which clearly shows their attitudes towards women.”

The facts,
All seems well in perspective with the narrative of human rights until you consider the fact that Hefazat has denied knowledge and responsibility for highly trumped up attack on Nadia Sharmin but asked for apology all the same through the following statement, “If our activists carried out the attack, we apologise for that but we believe that ruling party terrorists in the guise of Hefazat activists have carried out the attack on ETV journalist to create our negative image.” 
The omissions,
In its eagerness to forward its particular version of events, Bdnews24 has completely ignored the unrelenting government stance on the Hefazat from the very beginning. Few will forget the government role on the 5thof April, where cheap tactics such as paralysis of the public transport system and paying ‘scholars for hire’ to do some damage failed to prevent more than 5 million people joining the long march to Dhaka. Omissions of bdnews24 reek of yellow journalism when it fails to condemn or expose the massacre of innocent protesters at the hands of government forces at pre dawn hours of the 6thMay 30, 2013 or the horrendous press statement given, while holding on to a narrative that increasingly stands as being a parroted version of the discourse of Sheikh Hasina herself (Read on the BBC interview of PM Hasina).  The news agency has yet to condemn thetorture carried out in the name of remand against Junaid Babunagari.
On the contrary, the bdnews24 agency has spawned complete reports with the single aim to ridicule, demonize, misinterpret and create a permanent negative image of the Hefazat in the country. 
I urge bdnews24 to stop such despicable acts of yellow journalism.