Updated I: Amar Desh report on the plot.
Updated II: Case filed against Mahmudur Rahman, validating his prediction.
Updated III: Government shuts down Amar Desh and cancels its publication declaration.
Updated IV: Police surround Amar Desh building; Mahmudur Rahman’s arrest likely.
Updated V: Mahmudur Rahman arrested.
Updated VI: Mahmudur Rahman produced in Court.
Updated VII: Another case filed against Mahmudur Rahman, Amar Desh Deputy Editor and Chief Correspondent Syed Abdal Ahmed, four other staff and another one hundred unnamed individuals.
Updated VIII: A discerning reader, M. Amin, has commented below that the common thread running between the banning of Facebook and the closure of Amar Desh at this critical point may be the Government inquiry reports about the BDR massacre. These reports initially became available on Facebook, and Amar Desh has been publishing them on a daily basis.
Media reports are claiming that the government has picked up Hasmat Ali, the Publisher of Daily Amar Desh. Amar Desh Editor Mahmudur Rahman has claimed that the government has picked up Ali to pressurize him to file cases against Mahmudur Rahman. In true Bangladeshi fashion, the authorities are denying that they even have him in custody, and the family members are too terrified to speak out.
Why, so soon after the disastrous ban on Facebook, this crackdown on another media outlet? Mahmudur Rahman has long been a thorn on the side of this government; his paper broke the alleged corruption story between the Prime Minister’s son, Sajeeb Wazed Joy, and Chevron. Amar Desh also earned the ire of the First Family by detailing their internal squabbling about which of their relatives by marriage played the most anti-Bangladeshi role during the Liberation War of 1971.
Some of Amar Desh’s greatest hits from just the last two months: