Watching the watchmen watch the lamppost
On 5 July, 17 people under the banner of an organisation called Lamppost gathered in front of the Indian High Commission to protest the Tipaimukh dam. Evidently, a scuffle with the police ensued, and two people were arrested.
Let’s see how our media covered the news. At least one of the reports below is outright false. Maybe all of them are. The truth doesn’t seem to be something that exists in today’s Bangladesh.
The Daily Star didn’t report the actual incident, but reported the protest against the police attack. They describe Lamppost as a ‘largely unknown organisation’.
The New Age made a cover story out of the event, with a photo of police brutality. They describe Lamppost as ‘a left-leaning study circle and cultural group’.
Prothom Alo, intriguingly, speculated the groups alleged Maoist connection instead of the actual event in its piece titled ‘ল্যাম্পপোস্টে’র নামে গুলশানে চরমপন্থী সংগঠনের বিক্ষোভ ।
Amar Desh on the other hand tells us that there over a hundred protesters, over fifty of whom were injured in the police brutality that was instigated by the Indian High Commission officials, and the BNP chief issued a protest statement: টিপাইমুখ বাঁধবিরোধী মিছিলে পুলিশের বর্বরতাঃ গ্রেফতার দুইঃ খালেদার প্রতিবাদ ।
Jaijaidin doesn’t do a story, but gives us a picture.
Amader Shomoy tells us that the Indian High Commission was besieged (ঘেরাও), there was a police-public (জনতা) clash, and the BNP chief protested: টিপাইমুখ বাঁধ নির্মাণের প্রতিবাদে ভারতীয় হাই কমিশন ঘেরাও ।
Samakal tells us that it was the protesters who attacked the unarmed police first: ভারতীয় হাই কমিশনের পাশে পুলিশ-বিক্ষোভকারী সংঘর্ষঃ আহত ১০ । Samakal also reports Mrs Zia’s protest.
I haven’t been able to gather much about Lamppost from my Dhaka sources, except that they are a tiny organisation, and that they want to avenge the ‘assassination’ of Humayun Azad (photo: Rumi Ahmed).
(Crossposted at UV)