Blogger Avijit Roy's brutal murder in Dhaka shows your "personal" space is no longer "personal"

This image is said to have been circulated by the Extremists. It shows, Avijit Roy lying dead in a pool of blood on the street, and his injured wife (standing) seeking help.




The death of a US-based blogger Avijit Roy on the streets of Dhaka while he was returning from a Book Fair in the Bangladesh capital along with his wife, was a spine-chilling and gory incident that rattled me to the core. When I first heard of the incident on NDTV morning news, I was not just taken aback but also scared like never before. I am not here to make any commentary about his death, neither an analysis nor any talks about what we learn from this or what our leaders should do etc. I am merely writing this post as a fellow blogger.

The fact that Roy was killed for talking about religious fundamentalism, extremism and what not on his "personal" blog is not just ridiculous but also throws light on the fact that your personal life is no more personal. You are arrested for writing a status message criticising your government. You are arrested/threatened/killed for sharing cartoons of your political leaders. You are arrested/threatened for saying anything negative about your political leaders or religion. You are arrested/killed/threatened for writing, sharing, or talking, about anything in your personal space. This is probably the worst way of breaching privacy and curbing your freedom of expression. 


As a blogger, I was scared even to write this post. Who knows from where I may receive a threat? Who knows from where I may be chastised for voicing my opinions? Being a woman makes it worse for me. But the killing of Roy is something that should not be limited merely to protests and then subsequent arrest. Tomorrow, another blogger like Roy may be hacked to death for voicing his opinions in his personal space. The need of the hour is to find a solution towards how a person's personal space is not breached by such acts. As human beings, we have a right to voice our opinion in favor or against some incident/act that we find is unlawful or deserves our attention. 

Source: AFP/Getty Images
A blog is a platform which is supposed to showcase our views/opinions; likes/dislikes. Giving our thoughts the medium, and space, blogs are now an integral part of our lives just like how our personal diaries are. No one is allowed to make us ponder over what we have to write or express in our own personal space. What we are writing in a public platform is open to criticism and even worse consequences. Criticism is and can be taken with open arms. But dire consequences are something that will not go down well with any sane person. 

There was a sense of fear, sadness, anger that engulfed me when I was listening to the news reporter talk about how Roy was killed on the streets of Dhaka, while he was returning from a Book Fair. News Reports say he had come to Dhaka to attend the Book Fair. I wonder, when his wife comes to senses, will she be regretting making this trip? Had they stayed back in the States, Roy would have probably been alive and getting more such death threats (merely). 


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