Space For Rent

Space For Rent
Wednesday, February 18, 2015, Falgun 6, 1421 BS, Robi-Us-Sani 28, 1436 Hijr

Rape victims struggle with trauma
Number of incidents rises
Published : Wednesday, 18 February, 2015,  Time : 12:00 AM,  View Count : 23
Banani Mallick
Banu and Renuka (not real name), two young girls, jumped out from a running bus on February 9 late night to save themselves from what was going to be the biggest tragedy in their life.
The driver and helper of the bus attempted to rape them inside the bus they were on board on the Dhaka-Aricha Road near Savar.
Patrol police men in the area stopped the bus and detained the accused driver Masud Rana, 35, and the helper Hossain.
The two hapless girls were learnt to have recovered from their injuries but not from the trauma and torments they suffered from the rape attempt.  
Similar such incidents in others parts of the country were highlighted in  media recently.
A report prepared by Bangladesh Mahila Parishad following 15 national Bangla and English dailies showed that around 890 women were victims of rape and gang rape in 2014 while 881 women were victims of the same offences in 2013.
According to a recent survey conducted by Bangladesh Bureau of Statistics in collaboration with the United Nations Population Fund shows that nearly nine out of the 10 husband husbands abuse their wives in Bangladesh. The survey conducted on 12,600 women randomly chosen across the seven divisions says about 87 per cent of married women face abuse by their husbands.
Advocate Elina Khan, Investigation Director, Bangladesh Society for the Enforcement of Human Rights, said that violence against women takes place in most societies both physically and mentally.
"Women in Bangladesh, one of South Asian countries, face multiple forms of violence. Among those rape, dowry, sexual harassment, trafficking and other tortures are some of forms," she observed.
If the government does not exemplary punishment to the offenders violence against women will increase in the future.
Apart from indifference on the part of the authorities in most cases of rape and complexity in investigations, a social scientist blames the social unrest for such offence.
A boy or a man should not see a girl or woman as an object of having sexual pleasure. Men should treat women as human beings. Both women and men should have respects for one another, he observed.
He said that violent environment at family level, abuse of media contents and addiction to drugs also trigger men to commit crimes against women. And when offenders have the impunity they tend to repeat the crimes, he noted.  
Violence against women is amongst the most serious threats to overall development and progress in Bangladesh, said Ranjon Karmaker, Director of Step Towards Development, a non-government organization.
The existing patriarchal structure of society, culture, social belief, lack of implementation of law, lack of social protection, are behind the increase in the number of violence against women, he said.
Bangladesh National Women Lawyers Association (BNWLA) suggests that from the year of 2010 till now about 3,092 rape incidents occurred across the country.
Advocate Maksuda Akter Laily, Director of Legal Advocacy section of BNWLA, said that despite massive campaigns the situation of violence against women changed little.
"Rape and gang-rape, are two major forms of repression against women," she said.

Editor : Iqbal Sobhan Chowdhury
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