Monajatuddin: The Minstrel Journalist

Monajatuddin (photo: Pabna News)

Monajatuddin (source: Pabna News)

by Adnan R. Amin for

The works of Monajatuddin – the Minstrel Journalist – have had more of a shaping role in contemporary Bangladesh than that of many a politicians, development-pundits, editors or litterateurs. Take for example, the Child Marriage Restraint Act 2014, only recently okayed by the cabinet. It was Monajatuddin’s keen, investigative reporting on child marriage that informed and laid the groundwork for necessary social-debates and policy-making. Continue reading

Korpan Shah and the Medical Malady

A rally in Kolkata demanding justice for Korpan Shah. Source: Kolkata Today.

A rally in Kolkata demanding justice for Korpan Shah. Source: Kolkata Today.

By Pratik Deb for

The brutal death of Korpan Shah has raised enough hue and cry amid the media and public, partly because of its viciousness, and mostly because of its alleged perpetrators. Following an alleged theft of cell phone from the hostel of N.R.S. Medical College, Kolkata, the psychologically challenged Mr. Shah was lynched to death, allegedly by the students of premier institution. Continue reading

Kabir Suman on the origin of Taliban

Ronald Reagan with Mujaheedin leaders in 1985. Source:

Ronald Reagan with Mujaheedin leaders in 1985.

By Kabir Suman for

In the 80s Kabir Suman was working as a journalist for the Voice of America, under the Reagan administration. This is an inside view from those times as he retraces the genesis of the rise of Taliban. This was written in the wake of the senseless heinous act of Tehreek-e-Taliban Pakistan in Peshawar where they killed innocent school children in an army school. Continue reading


Sundarbans in Grave Danger and Our Government’s inaction

By Kallol Mustafa from Joymoni, Sundarbans
Translated by Tibra Ali for

Since the oil spill disaster started in the Sundarbans on the night of the 9th of December many ebbs and flows of the tide have come and gone. The thick and poisonous spilled oil reaches wherever the water reaches during the high tide, via the Shela river (where the disaster originated), Pasur and Baleshwari rivers, and the innumerable canals. Continue reading

Sundarbans’s Fight for Survival

Photo: AFP

Photo: AFP

Anu Muhammad for Prothom Alo
Translated by Irfan Chowdhury for Alal O Dulal

Whenever we appeal to stop the destructive Rampal project and ORION coal based power plant, to safeguard our great Sundarbans, natural habitat of thousands of lives, whenever we ask to cancel Fulbari open pit project which damages a vast agricultural land and a large civilization, Continue reading

A Man of Peace

Tanvir Haider Chaudhury (age 3) with his father Prof. Mufazzal Haider Chaudhury. Source: Tanvir family album, with permission.

Tanvir Haider Chaudhury (age 3) with his father Prof. Mufazzal Haider Chaudhury. Source: Tanvir family album, with permission.

A Man of Peace

by Tanvir Haidar Chaudhury

‘He’s a great humanitarian, he’s a great philanthropist
He knows just where to touch you, honey, and how you like to be kissed
He’ll put both his arms around you
You can feel the tender touch of the beast
You know that sometimes Satan comes as a man of peace’ Continue reading

Freedom and Memory

David Bergman. Source: The Independent, U.K.

David Bergman. Source: The Independent, U.K.

Freedom and Memory

by Tibra Ali and Zahur Ahmed for

We Bangladeshis are not known for holding back our emotions — we tend to use emotional arguments as a recourse in situations where we are unable to win by rational arguments. We were reminded of this recently when the verdict of ‘guilty’ of contempt of court was awarded to David Bergman. Continue reading

Known Unknowns of the Class War


Courtesy Naeem Mohaiemen

by Naeem Mohaiemen

When you turn to page 186 of In the Light of What We Know, you encounter an illustration. The novel’s two main characters have by this point discussed many things, and readers may have already been craving visual aids. But this is the first time the text is interrupted by a diagram. You sense, therefore, the arrival of a crucial digression. Continue reading

Reflections on “Unprecedented Changes” in the Garments Sector of Bangladesh

Garments workers

The Institute for Global Labour and Human Rights’ report Unprecedented Changes.

by Farida Khan for

The Tazreen fire and Rana Plaza collapse has made many Western consumers shudder at the thought of their complicity with sub-human conditions in the Third World factories where their clothes are sewn. While consumers are often careful to avoid purchasing soccer balls sewn by child labor Continue reading