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16-year-old offered lift in Gaibandha, raped by two

  • Published at 03:36 pm July 14th, 2021
Photo: Dhaka Tribune

Police trying to arrest the accused

A 16-year-old girl was allegedly raped by two men in Gaibandha Sadar upazila on Monday night on the pretext of being offered a lift.

In her complaint, the girl claimed that she had a tiff with her mother over a small issue on Monday. Later in the evening, she left her house and went to Balua Bazar to take a bus to Dhaka.

As she was waiting near a bus ticket counter around 7pm, its in-charge and his assistant asked the girl why she was out on the streets during the lockdown.

When the girl told them that she wanted to go to the capital, the duo immediately offered to arrange a microbus for her trip. The unsuspecting girl agreed to go with them and got into the vehicle without any hesitation, police said.

However, the duo allegedly took her to an abandoned house in the upazila on the pretext of wrapping up some unfinished work before heading to Dhaka and took turns to rape her.

The girl was later rescued by local residents, according to the police.

A case of rape has been filed with Sadar police station against the two, Kasai Lal Mia and Bakul Prodhan, on the basis of the girl's complaint, said OC Mahfuzar Rahman."Efforts are on to nab the two accused," he added.

Also Read - Chittagong girl fends off rapist with pepper powder

Bangladesh's rape epidemic

Sexual assaults on women continue unabated in Bangladesh, despite the government introducing the death penalty for rapes last year.

A police headquarters report, released recently, said that 26,695 rape cases were filed across the country in the past five years.

Ain o Salish Kendra (ASK) data shows that 1,018 children were raped last year alone, but only 683 police cases had been filed. Also, 116 survivors were six years old or below.

Overall, 1,627 rape cases were reported last year and 53 of the women were killed by the perpetrators while 14 took their own lives, according to the data.

However, ASK's data is just the tip of the iceberg, according to aid agencies, who report that most women are too afraid to report rape.

In October 2020, the country was rocked by protests after a woman was allegedly attacked and raped in Noakhali.

In November last year, Bangladesh introduced capital punishment for rape, following days of protests against sexual violence against women in several cities across the country.

But human rights organizations say the move will not solve the country's rape crisis, as the survivors of the heinous crime are often stigmatized in the society.