Renowned Bangladeshi writer and publisher Shahzahan Bachchu was shot dead by unidentified assailants in Kakaldi in Munshiganj district, central Bangladesh on Monday evening, June 11. The 60-year-old writer was a prominent secularist.
The incident took place when Bachchu had visited his friends near a pharmacy shop right before iftar. This was when five attackers on two motorcycles blasted a crude bomb outside the pharmacy store and dragged Bachchu out of the shop and shot him dead, reports the Dhaka Tribune.
"Two motorcyclists wearing helmets first exploded two to three crude bombs and then shot him dead," officer-in-charge (OIC) of the Sirajdikhan police station told Benar News.
The Bangladeshi writer was soon rushed to a nearby hospital, however, he was pronounced brought dead. "He suffered a bullet wound on his chest. He actually died before he was taken to the hospital," Dulal Ahmed, a doctor at the Sirajdikhan health complex was quoted as saying by the Bangladeshi news outlet.
Although the police have said that no group has taken responsibility for Bachchu's murder, they claim it could be an attack by Islamist extremists who disagree with his secularist views, Press Trust of India reported.
Bachchu, the owner of a publishing house 'Bishaka Prokashoni', had even received multiple death threats for his outspoken support to secularism. His publishing house is located in Dhaka's Banglabazar area.
Bachchu was the former district general secretary of the Communist Party of Bangladesh. He was known as a free-thinking writer and was well-known on social media for his secularist views.
This is not the first time that Bangladesh has witnessed the killing of secular bloggers and activists. The death of atheist writer and blogger Avijit Roy rattled Bangladesh on February 26, 2015. In the same year, Avijit's publisher Faisal Arefin Dipan was killed on October 31, 2015, reports PTI.