University teachers stand by 'threatened' DU professor Faroque


Some 66 faculty members from different universities of the country expressed grave concern over 'threats' against Dhaka University (DU) researcher professor ABM Faroque.

In a press statement on Monday, the university teachers condemned the offensive speech and behaviour made by different groups against the recent research of Biomedical Research Centre on kitchen products including pasteurized milk, reports UNB. 

On 13 July, DU professor ABM Faroque said, he does not feel safe.

"The way some government officials and company owners verbally attacked me over the results of a survey to determine packaged milk's quality is disturbing. I now feel threatened," professor Faroque told Prothom Alo on Saturday.

The professor of DU's Faculty of Pharmacy, also former director of Biomedical Research Centre, however is unwavering over the results of his tests.

Professor Faroque's research team claimed to have found traces of antibiotics in 10 samples of pasteurised and unpasteurised milk produced by several companies.

Claiming that Faroque did not do any unethical deed rather did his duties, the statement of 66 teachers under 'Network of University Teachers' said: "It was his responsibility to publish the study results for public concern, as a university teacher."

"The standards for testing milk set by the Bangladesh Standards and Testing Institution (BSTI) since 17 years are not enough to determine milk quality. The BSTI does not have any method to detect the presence of antibiotics in milk. The issue related to public health would have been unknown, if the study was not revealed," the media release added.

The teachers claimed to encourage such research to enhance the interest of teachers for research as well as freedom of thought.

Teachers including Jahangirnagar University Economics department professor Anu Muhammad, DU mass communication and journalism professors Gita Aara Nasrin, Kaberi Gayen, Fahmidul Haq, DU Sociology teacher Samina Lutfa, North South University faculty member Mobeshwar Hassan, Bangladesh Agriculture University teacher Kazi Sheikh Farid, Chittagong University Anthropology department teacher Sadaf Noor-E-Islam expressed solidarity among others.

On 9 July, fisheries and livestock ministry additional secretary Kazi Wasi Uddin warned of legal action against the researchers including professor Faroque if they fail to show their study published in a peer-reviewed journal.