• Wednesday, Oct 23, 2019
  • Last Update : 09:38 am

Forced marriage to rapist: Probe body finds evidence

  • Published at 12:42 am September 16th, 2019
Rape culture
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The probe report has been sent to the Cabinet Division

The probe committee, formed by the Cabinet Division to investigate the allegation of forced marriage of a gang rape survivor to one of her rapists at a police station, has found the allegation to be true. 

Pabna Deputy Commissioner Kabir Mahmud disclosed this to the reporters at a press briefing at his residence on Sunday night.

The three-member probe body, led by Additional District Magistrate Zahid Newaz, termed the incident as "series rape", he said.

They visited the crime spots, talked to people including the rape survivor and found the allegations to be true, Kabir said.

"The report has been sent to the Cabinet Division for them to decide the next course of action," he added.

On September 12, the Cabinet Division ordered the local administration to form a probe body to look into the incident and asked it to submit the report within three days.

Earlier, Pabna police administration formed a three-member probe committee to look into the matter.

As they found allegations to be true, the police administration withdrew Officer-in-Charge (OC) Obaidul Haque from Sadar police station and closed him to the police lines, and suspended Sub-Inspector (SI) Ekramul Haque.

What happened?

On August 29, the woman, a resident of Pabna Sadar upazila and mother of three children, eloped with her neighbour Russel Ahmed who kept her confined to a friend's house.

Russel along with his two friends violated her in turns.

The rape survivor went to Shariful Islam alias Ghontu, joint general secretary of Dapunia union unit Awami League, and sought justice on August 31.

Shariful and his accomplices also violated the woman for three days confining her to his business office.

She, however, managed to flee the spot and disclosed the incidents to her family.

On September 5, the woman was admitted to Pabna General Hospital. Being released on the same day, she came to Sadar police station to lodge a complaint.

Instead of filing a case, the police officials forced the woman to marry Russel showing her a divorcee in marriage registration form. 

As mass media made the incidents public, a case was filed in direction of the superintendent of police. 

Sadar police station OC (investigation) Asaduzzaman said the case was filed citing five names including the prime accused Russel on September 9. 

Later, police arrested all the accused in connection with the incident.  

Meanwhile, local Awami League leader Shariful Islam was suspended from the party, confirmed Sohel Hasan, general secretary of the party's Sadar upazila unit.