Published: 12 April 2021, Dhaka Tribune
Link: Rape epidemic: 2 held over gang rape in Pabna
Police arrested two youths Sunday for gang-raping a homemaker in Pabna’s Chatmohar upazila.
The arrested are identified as Atikur Rahman, 26, and Abdul Halim, 30.
Sajib Shahrin, assistant superintendent of police (Chatmohar circle), said that the accused grabbed the homemaker, forced her into the nearby garden and raped her when she went outside on Saturday night.
They fled the scene as the woman’s husband rushed to the spot hearing her scream, he said.
Later, her husband filed a case over the incident, he said, adding that the rape survivor was sent to the hospital for a medical test.
Bangladesh’s rape epidemic
Bangladesh is facing a rape epidemic despite recent government approval of the death penalty for the crime – not that evidence ever suggested it would have the desired effect.
Earlier this month, a police headquarters report said 26,695 rape cases had been filed across the country in the last five years.
Ain o Salish Kendra (ASK) data shows that 1,018 children were raped last year alone, but only 683 police cases were filed. Also, 116 victims were 6 years old or below.
Overall, 1,627 rape cases were reported last year and 53 of the victims were killed by the perpetrators while 14 took their own lives, the data showed.
However, ASK’s data was likely 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 attacked and raped in Noakhali.
In November last year, Bangladesh introduced the death penalty for rape, following days of protests against sexual violence against women in several cities across Bangladesh.
But human rights organizations say the move will not solve the country’s rape crisis, as victims of sex assault are often stigmatized in society.