Torkamani, an economist and author of several books, was arrested after writing articles critical of government policies for a number of publications, particularly the energy trade journal Danesh-e-Naft, according to news accounts. He also gave interviews to the U.S. government-funded Radio Farda and other media outlets in which he criticized government plans to eliminate consumer subsidies.
Torkamani and some other analysts had argued that the plan, supported by President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad, was insufficiently researched. He had also participated in an academic debate that challenged the plan. Authorities had not disclosed formal charges or Torkamani’s whereabouts by late year.