The attacks took place over a year ago
A Dhaka court has sentenced two people to death in a case filed over the rape and murder of two five-year-old girls in Demra, Dhaka last year.
Judge Joyshree Samaddar of Dhaka Women and Children Repression Prevention Tribunal 3 gave the verdict on Tuesday morning.
The court also fined the convicts – Golam Mostafa, 28, and his cousin Azizul Bawani, 30 – Tk50,000 each.
In an immediate reaction, the victims' parents expressed satisfaction with the verdict, while the defence counsels said they would go to the High Court to appeal against it.
Parvin Akter, mother of one of the victims, Faria Akter Dola, said they got justice from the court.
“Now my only request to the High Court is that the verdict be upheld and executed quickly.”
Palash Hawlader, father of Nusrat Jahan, the other victim, said: “We are happy. We want the High Court to uphold the verdict if the convicts appeal against it.”
Defence lawyer Md Jahirul Islam said they were not satisfied with the verdict and would move the High Court against it.
The rape and murder take place in Demra’s Konapara area on January 7, 2019.
Mostafa and Azizul, the convicts, lured the two children, who were playing near their house, with the promise of lipsticks and took them to Mostafa's house, where they confined the children in a room.
Then they raped the two children, and strangled them to death.
Nusrat’s father Palash Hawlader filed a case with Demra police station against the accused.
The next day, the culprits were arrested from Jatrabari and Demra areas.
In Bangladesh, only 3% of cases relating to violence against women and children result in a conviction, as reported by Women and Children Repression Prevention Tribunal from five districts.
In an event titled “National Dialogue on Actions against Sexual Violence,” held on November 25 last year, speakers pointed out that coordination is required in every stage of the trial proceedings – from filing of a case to the deliberation of the verdict – in order to ensure justice for rape victims.
In 2019, at least 1,005 children were raped or sexually assaulted across Bangladesh, according to data collected by Bangladesh Shishu Adhikar Forum.
Of them, 108 children were gang-raped, and 47 children were murdered after rape.
Tuesday’s verdict set a precedence for ensuring justice for rape victims in the country.