Punishment can be handed out based on victim’s testimony and other circumstantial evidence, says the court
In its observation regarding a 2006 rape case, the High Court has said that the accused in such case cannot be exonerated just because there was no medical evidence to prove the crime.
The bench of Justice Md Rezaul Haque and Justice Bhishmadev Chakrabortty made the observation in the 15-page verdict of the 2006 case that was published recently, Deputy Attorney General Jannatul Ferdoushi Rupa told Dhaka Tribune.
The defendant cannot be acquitted on the ground that the rape was not proved in absence of a medical examination and medical evidence, the High Court said.
If the allegations brought against the accused can be proved by the testimony of the victim and other circumstantial evidence, then punishment can be handed out based on them, it said.
According to the High Court bench, a lower court on May 17, 2006 — some 32 days after the rape — ordered the medical examination of the victim after the plaintiff filed an application in this regard.
But the test was not conducted in the end. Also, it was not unusual that there would not have been any evidence of the rape since the order came 32 days after the incident, the High Court observed.
The High Court on February 27, 2020 upheld the life imprisonment of the accused in the rape case that was handed down by a Khulna lower court.
According to the case filed under the Prevention of Women and Children Repression Act 2000, accused Ibrahim Gazi forced himself on a then ninth-grader on April 15, 2006.
The case was filed with the local Women and Children Repression Prevention Tribunal eight days later.
The tribunal on March 3, 2019, sentenced Ibrahim to life imprisonment, fined him Tk20,000, and directed that he would have to serve two more years in prison if he failed to pay the fine.