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Editors Forum, CRAB condemn, protest BPSA statement

Published : Tuesday, 25 June, 2024 at 12:00 AM  Count : 79

Bangladesh Editors Forum and Crime Reporters Association of Bangladesh (CRAB) on Monday condemned protested the statement issued by Bangladesh Police Service Association (BPSA), saying it is detrimental to independent journalism.

The two organisations also expressed deep concern as the BPSA statement may encourage corruption.

Editors Forum chief Advisor Iqbal Sobhan Chowdhury, Convener Rafiqul Islam Ratan and Member Secretary Faruk Ahmed Talukder in a joint statement said, "Investigative reports that have been published in various media outlets about the unusual wealth of some former and current senior police officials of the country is an expression of bold and independent journalis. Journalists publish reports based on facts. On the basis of these news published in the media, various agencies of the government including the Anti-Corruption Commission (ACC) have already started investigations against the accused persons. Even the government has declared zero tolerance to corruption and said that no one is above law."

"The government will take strict action against those who indulge in corruption and abuse of power. No organisation should bear the responsibility of any individual," said the statement.

It said, "The BPSA statement blaming the media is not at all acceptable and desirable."

"We feel that the Police Association needs to speak out against those who are indulging in corruption and tarnishing the image of the police force rather than blaming the media unnecessarily. It will brighten the image of the police force in the public mind," Editors Forum statement said.

CRAB President Kamruzzaman Khan and General Secretary Sirajul Islam in a separate statement demanded withdrawal of the BPSA statement.

In letters sent on Friday, the BPSA urged journalists to be more cautious and follow the principles of journalism properly while publishing any report about the police force in the future.

BPSA claimed the reports being run by print, electronic, and social media outlets are "partial, motivated, exaggerated, and misleading".

The CRAB in its statement on Monday said it is the job of responsible journalism to investigate corruption and irregularities and expose the abuse of power.

"In recent times, some reports were published on the unusual asset amassment by some former and current officials. We don think they were published with any specific intent," said the statement.

The news about some of the current and former police officers is a continuation of the responsible and information-based news which journalists always publish, the CRAB said.

CRAB said it expects cooperation from all to implement the governments declared "zero tolerance policy" against corruption.

Earlier, The Editors Council, Bangladesh Federal Union of Journalists, Dhaka Union of Journalists, Dhaka Reporters Unity (DRU) and Broadcast Journalist Center (BJC) issued separate statements, terming BPSA statement a threat to independent journalism.

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