A domestic law enforcement force called RAB ( Rapid Action batallion) was formed during the tenure of the last elected Government. Although this forces was very well organized, efficient and technologically savy, it turned very controversial because of it’s encounter killings. By encouter killing, it used to kill alleged criminals soon after they were apprehended. Following day statements used to be made with stories like how the criminal tried to run from custody and at the same time the gangs of the accused started firing at the RAB and in cross fire the accused was killed. Similarly stories were fed to the news outlests about all the criminal activities of the deadbody when he was alive. Newspapers used to publishand the public used to love those.

At the end of the day, we used to have an alleged crime, a suspect, a deadbody, a repeatation of the allegations and a cheering group of public. What was misisng in the whole chain of event was any opportunity of self defence/ clarification for the accused who is already killed.

Now we are witnessing this “criossfire” style journalism in Bagladesh. Our newspaper headings are now filled with accounts of confessions of the jailed political bigwigs. And definitely the confessions are being published without any mention of a source and as if the confession was made to the reporter. And newspapers are lining up along the party divide to decide whose confession they would publish and how they would change the story.

See todays Nayadiganta,Dinkal or Amar Desh, you will be horrified with the stories of Jalil, Saber, Aman, Selim, asaduzzaman Noor being involved in anti-state conspiracy. Also if you are a BNP supporter you will giggle at the stories of Hasina taking money from different businessmen.

And similarly on the other hand, the headlines of AL supporting newspapers like prothom-Alo, Janakantha, Jugantor, Shamokal were filled last several days with news about the confessions of Lutfuzzzaman Babar taking bribe from Boshundhora. However as babar was lately not a BNP loyal anymore, Babar story was equally used by the pro-BNP newspapers. And to counter Hasina- Jalil incrimination, the pro-Al news outlets needed someting more to incriminate Khaleda Zia directly. And lately these newspapers, as PA, Shamokal, Jugantor etc did today, changed their unsourced confessions of Babar to include Khalda, Tareq and Coco as recipients of the bribe also.

The AL leaning newspappers first started these sensations back in those days when Gias uddin Mamun and Tareq Rahman were arrested. Tons of sensational news(?) came out on what exactly Mamun said, what he has confessed to so far. But three months later when Maun is in court, we do not see any echo of those confessions in the court.

Politicians did a lot of crimes in BD. Nobody denies that. But the problem here is that these news are being published in headlines which BD people tend to believe. So in fact we are witnessing a mass character massacre where the characters of those are being assasinated are not getting any scope to protest or defend themselves.

This is really a deja Vu. Journalism-RAB style.

BTW, has any newspaper published how much our dear Mr Motiur Rahman and other editors took bribe ( In cash and advertisement) NOT to publish the story of Bashundhara ower’s son’s involvement in the murder?