Jamaat controversy roils Ekushey Book Fair

Jamaat controversy roils Ekushey Book Fair

Reazul Bashar
bdnews24.com Correspondent

Dhaka, Feb 7 (bdnews24.com)—The Ekushey Book Fair Thursday hit some buzz of controversy over the selling of books written by Jamaat-e-Islami leaders.

From a press conference, Sammilita Sangskritik Jote, a cultural outfit, criticised Bangla Academy for allotting a stall to Adhunik Prokashani that put the books up for sale at the fair.

The SSJ demanded cancellation of the allotment.

The stall sells books by Jamaat ideologue Mawdudi, the party’s former Ameer Golam Azam, Ameer Motiur Rahman Nizami and other leaders Abbas Ali Khan, Khaleque Mojumder, Qamaruzzaman and Delwar Hossain Saidee.

The leaders are widely known as having links to 1971 war crimes or blamed for backings for the "war criminals".

Dhaka University teacher Muhammad Samad, also SSJ vice-president, said: "The Ekushey Book Fair is organised in memory of the students and people who shed their blood to uphold the dignity of their mother language."

Samad emphasised that the fair organiser should not have approved a stall to sell the books written by "anti-Liberation and war criminals".

Samad said: "We protest Bangla Academy’s decision to allot a stall to the publisher. The stall must be cancelled immediately."

Poet and writer Abu Hasan Shahriar said: "It’s a shame on writers, publishers and readers that Bangla Academy has approved a stall for Adhunik Prokashani."

Expressing his surprise at how the books of "identified war criminals" found their way into the Book Fair, poet Humayun Reza told bdnews24.com: "An investigation should be opened into why and how the stall was still there even after the matter came to light."

Imran Ashraf Chowdhury who came to the fair from Uttara told bdnews24.com: "The war criminals don’t have the right to participate in the Ekushey Book Fair. They must be tried for war crimes."

"Bangla Academy has committed a crime by allotting a stall to the publisher."

Dhaka University student Javid Iqbal Bangali demanded cancellation of the stall allotment.

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bdnews24.com Correspondent Reazul Bashar reports from the scene. Courtesy bdnews24.com

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