Govt bans ETV talk shows
Monday, 28 January 2008

Agency

Bangladesh's army-backed emergency government has banned two popular live political talk shows, the private satellite television channel ETV said Saturday.

'The information ministry handed us a written order saying that we cannot telecast out our live talk shows any more,' a senior ETV official said.

The two prime time shows, off the air since Thursday, hosted political and civil society leaders and took questions from viewers and journalists on political, economic, social and cultural issues.

ETV, the country's first terrestrial television station, was banned by a court order during the previous Bangladesh Nationalist Party-led government in 2002. It resumed operation last year after foregoing its terrestrial rights.

The ban was the first on the media since last August, when the government briefly stopped all live private television talk shows as part of a crackdown on student unrest.

The unrest began at Dhaka University where students demanded the army withdraw from the campus. It spread across main cities of the country, leaving at least one dead and dozens injured.

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