After a lull of a couple of years it looks like Islamic extremists have returned to their most brutal form of censorship – murdering authors and publishers that dare take a different view.
In 2015 atheist author and blogger Avijit Roy was murdered at the Amar Ekushey Boi Mela (Dhaka International Book fair), followed by another attack in October of that year when Avijit’s publisher Faisal Arefin Dipan was hacked to death.
Now comes the murder of Shahzahan Bachchu, aetheist owner of the poetry publishing house ‘Bishaka Prokashoni’ , who was taken from his home at gunpoint and shot in the street.
Previous attacks have been proudly proclaimed by Islamic militant groups and the expectations are an extremist group will claim responsibility shortly, the author having received numerous death threats from Islamic militants.
With a population of 166 million, three murders of this nature, while of course three too many, shows the Bangladeshi authorities are managing to contain the terrorists, and Bangladesh remains an exciting book market.