Hindu's Anti-Islam Post: 10-Year Sentence in Bangladesh

A young Hindu man from Bangladesh was arrested and convicted for allegedly insulting Islam and the Prophet Muhammad through a social media post around six years ago.

On May 23rd, a court in the city of Rangpur in northwestern Bangladesh convicted a man named Titu Roy for making derogatory, anti-Islam remarks on Facebook, sentencing him to ten years in prison.

According to Ruhul Amin Talukder, the public prosecutor and advocate who handled the case, the Rangpur Cyber Tribunal Court under Judge Dr. Abdul Majid also slapped Roy with a 50,000 Bangladeshi taka fine, equivalent to around 466 US dollars.

Titu Roy, according to reports by Bangladeshi media, is a son of the late Khogendranath Roy of Harikoly Thakurpara under the city’s Gangachara police station.

Documents related to the case reported that Titu made his alleged anti-Islam post on October 28, 2017, while working in the central city of Narayanganj.

The post sparked an intense backlash among local Muslims, and they held human chains to protest against Titu at the Shleyashah Bazar in Rangpur, calling for his punishment for his remarks.

Infuriated by the incident, people vandalized and even burned houses belonging to the Hindu community in Thakurpara, inciting further sectarian violence that has characterized much of the Indian subcontinent.

Two separate cases were later filed at the Rangpur Sadar and Gangachara police stations in connection to these incidents, with the trial over the case for vandalism still ongoing.

After investigating the complaint filed against Titu, the court handed down his conviction. Titu was present in the trial while he was being sentenced. The public prosecutor expressed satisfaction with the case's verdict, saying the conviction helped them achieve justice.

However, Proshanta Kumar Roy, the defendant’s lawyer, was unhappy with the trial result, adding that Titu’s legal team will appeal to the high court against the conviction, saying that Titu was denied justice during court proceedings.

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