Bangladeshi Bloggers Still at Enormous Risk

Two of the four atheist bloggers arrested in Bangladesh recently are out of jail on bail, but that does not mean they are out of danger. As we’ve seen in Pakistan, Indonesia and other Muslim-dominated countries, those accused of blasphemy are often attacked by angry mobs. HuffPo interviews one of them about it:

Even though Rasel Parvez is out of prison, he isn’t out of danger.

“They have pushed my life to a state in which I cannot walk free. I remain in self-confinement day after day, and my social relations are mostly snapped,” said Parvez, 36, in an interview with The Huffington Post.

He is talking about the Bangladeshi government, which arrested him and three other bloggers last month for “derogatory comments about Islam.” Parvez, who is currently out on bail, has been branded with the label “atheist” blogger because he dared to criticize the abuse of religion by politicians.

It took Parvez and Subrata Adhikary Shuvo, 24, another arrested blogger, more than a month to obtain bail. The other two — Mashiur Rahman Biplob, 42, and Asif Mohiuddin, 30 — remain in jail.

But Parvez’s own home in Dhaka, Bangladesh’s capital city, has become something of a prison, as he fears for his life whenever he steps outside.

After his release from jail, some of his most vociferous critics took to Facebook to offer rewards to anyone who killed Parvez, with one offer as high as $12,871 in U.S. dollars. (Per capita income in Bangladesh in 2010 was $641 a year.)

What Parvez is facing is nothing less than barbarism.

2 comments on this post.
  1. composer99:

    The people offering money needn’t worry. Their deity will deliver vengeance by flooding the country over the next century or two as the Greenland & Antarctic land ice caps melt.

    Slow, indiscrimiate vengeance, but vengeance nonetheless. Parvez will get what’s coming!

    (Oh, wait, I think I’m getting my wingnut wires crossed.)

  2. Dr X:

    They should retrain their thought police, prosecutors and judges to spend their days on building inspection and construction code enforcement.

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