Rape and murder of Yasmin Akhter

The rape of Yasmin Akhter refers to the rape and murder of a 14-year-old girl by members of Bangladesh Police in 1995 which resulted in mass protests in Dinajpur.[1][2]

HistoryEdit

IncidentEdit

Yasmin Akhter was a 14 year old domestic helper in Dhaka. She was returning to her hometown in Dashmile area in Dinajpur on 24 August 1995 when she got on the wrong bus and became lost. She was then offered a lift by three members of the Bangladesh Police Force in a police van. The officers were later identified as Moinul Hoque, Abdus Sattar, and Amrita Lal. However, instead of taking her home, the three officers then drove Akhter to a secluded spot, where she was gang-raped and strangled to death. Her body was then thrown off the side of a road and discovered the next day.[3][4][5][6]

ReactionEdit

On 25 August 1995, Manoranjan Shill Gopal, the local Member of Parliament had informed Matiur Rahman the editor of local newspaper, The Daily Uttarbangla, that police had raped and killed a girl. Rahman learned the identity of the victim on 26 August and wanted to publish a news article but he was warned by the police not to. At night the police cut the electric supply to the news office. Rahman borrowed the electricity of his neighbor and used that to publish the news. Following the publication of the news mass protest erupted. The local police station was attacked and looted. Curfew was declared in the area. Police fired on protesters killing 17 and injuring about 100 people.[3][7]

Trial and legacyEdit

Three police officers were accused in the case. Two of the police officers, Moinul Hoque and Abdus Sattar, were arrested in 1997. They were tried and found guilty of rape and murder and sentenced to death by hanging. Amrita Lal was arrested years after the verdict, but also received a death sentence. The trial process had faced resistance from the police who initially refused to register the case. The government was under pressure from women's rights activists and the civil society.[8]

Hoque and Sattar were both executed by hanging on September 1, 2004, in Rangpur Central Jail. Later that same month, after his clemency requests were denied, Lal was also executed by hanging at Rangpur, though he expressed remorse to the victim's family prior to his death.[9][10]

24 August is marked as Resistance Day against Repression of Women in Bangladesh.[3][11]

ReferencesEdit

  1. ^ Alam, S. M. Shamsul (29 April 2016). Governmentality and Counter-Hegemony in Bangladesh. Springer. ISBN 9781137526038. Retrieved 25 February 2017.
  2. ^ Kumari, Ved; Brooks, Susan L. (10 August 2004). Creative Child Advocacy: Global Perspectives. SAGE Publications India. p. 37. ISBN 9788132103288.
  3. ^ a b c "Yasmin Murder 1995: Media played a brave role despite threat". The Daily Star. 24 February 2017. Retrieved 25 February 2017.
  4. ^ Children in South Asia: Securing Their Rights. Amnesty International. 1998. p. 15.
  5. ^ "Remembering Yasmin". 22 August 2015.
  6. ^ "Ex-Bangladesh policemen executed". 2 September 2004.
  7. ^ "She is mine". The Daily Star. 30 March 2016. Retrieved 25 February 2017.
  8. ^ "REMEMBERING YASMIN". The Daily Star. 22 August 2015. Retrieved 25 February 2017.
  9. ^ "Ex-Bangladesh policemen executed". 2 September 2004.
  10. ^ "The Daily Star Web Edition Vol. 5 Num 126".
  11. ^ "Resistance Day for Repression against Women observed". Dhaka Tribune. 2016-08-24. Retrieved 2020-12-01.