Today, on April 6, 2016, at approximately 9 pm in the evening, Nazimuddin Samad, a student of the Jagannath University, was hacked to death by unknown assailants in Dhaka’s Sutrapur. Nazimuddin was a courageous freethinker; he was vocal in his support for a secular and humane Bangladesh. As he was returning from his university a few young men, who came there on a motorcycle, intercepted him at the Ekrampur crossing and started hacking him with their machetes. In the end, they made sure that Nazimuddin would die by shooting him in the head. Witnesses said the assailants shouted “Allahu Akbar” (Allah is great) as they killed Nazimuddin.
Even though nobody has claimed responsibility for this murder, the modus operandi was very similar to all the killings carried out by the extremist Islamist militants in Bangladesh.
— Raihan Abir (@raihan_abir) April 8, 2016
Bangladesh government will scrutinise Nazim’s writings
“It is needed to see whether he has written anything objectionable in his blogs.”
Home minister of Bangladesh, Mr. Asaduzzaman Kamal, told BBC that the government is going to scrutinise Nazim’s writing (to see whether he deserve this punishment by the Islamic extremists or not)
Rafida Ahmed Bonya, Mukto-Mona writer, wife of Avijit Roy wrote in response to the attack-
The change has to come from inside; the world can watch, sigh, sympathize, or even provide support, but the ultimate change has to come from inside. We have already seen that our so called ‘secular’ government will not side with us; they will either stay quiet or support the Islamic fundamentalists. They have been reluctant to find and try the killers of the previous bloggers and publishers. Starting from the killings of the secular writers, bloggers, activists, publishers, mass rape in our tribal areas, rape in protected army cantonment areas, to arrests of writers under ICT Act 57, the banning of bookstores and putting the writer/publisher in jail by the government – the government’s actions are a far cry from its ‘secular’ constitution. Its completely unacceptable that you get hacked by the religious fanatics or arrested by the government of a democratic country when you express your views or simply ask questions about religion. The Bangladeshi people have to stand up against it; they need to build a movement to fight Islamic fundamentalism in the country and also pressurize the government to take action.
Watch her interview with CNN.
Dhaka Tribune: JnU student killed in suspected militant attack
Over the last couple of years, secular activists in Bangladesh were murdered in same manner though no Islamic extremist group has yet confirmed their involvement in Samad’s murder.
Samad was under threat by the Islamist for his activism and when asked to stay safe, this is how he responded-
Azharul islam: Worried about you Nazim. Be careful, please. You already know what’s happening! Be careful.
Nazimuddin Samad: I am also scared, Sir, scared of getting killed. But what else can I do? It’s better to die rather than living by keeping my head down.
More news on secular, atheist killing in Bangladesh
26th February, 2015, on BBC: US-Bangladesh blogger Avijit Roy hacked to death
31st March, 2015, on CNN: Washiqur Rahman: Another secular blogger hacked to death in Bangladesh.
12th May, 2015, on BBC: Bangladesh blogger Ananta Bijoy Das hacked to death
7th August, 2015, on BBC: Bangladesh blogger Niloy Neel hacked to death in Dhaka
31st October, 2015, on BBC: Bangladeshi secular publisher hacked to death