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Bangladeshi lawmaker held for assaulting journalists

Published: 24th July 2013 08:51 PM  |   Last Updated: 24th July 2013 08:51 PM   |  A+A-

By IANS

A Bangladeshi parliamentarian was arrested for allegedly assaulting two journalists last week, after a court scrapped his bail Wednesday.

On Saturday, Golam Maula Rony, of the ruling Bangladesh Awami League party, allegedly beat up journalist Imtiaz Momin and video journalist Mohsin Mukul who are members of a team that produces a crime-investigative show for local Independent TV channel, reported Xinhua.

The journalists had gone to Rony's office following a tip-off that a bribe of more than 10 million taka (about $128,000) was to reach his office.

Momin said they were waiting at a staircase to grab the footage of the "bribe being delivered," when the lawmaker showed up and punched him on face. He said the lawmaker and his associates later broke their camera, took away its memory card, and beat up both the journalists with big sticks.

On Sunday, the lawmaker took the ad-interim bail from another court in the case, filed Saturday by the private TV channel, owned by Salman F. Rahman, an advisor to Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina.

The Dhaka court Wednesday cancelled his bail and issued an arrest warrant as complainant Yusuf Ali, an assistant manager of the Independent TV, had appealed to the court seeking cancellation of Rony's bail.

The lawmaker denied the allegations of having assaulted the journalists. But the footage recovered from the memory chip, telecast by Independent and other TV channels, showed that the lawmaker had first struck.

Rony, for his part, has sued both the journalists, accusing them of attacking him, sending him death threats and trying to extort money from him. The two journalists received bail from the high court Tuesday.

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