When are we going to do something about this sickness?
According to reports, there have been over 600 rapes of children in Bangladesh in 2019.
Let that number sink in -- these are just the reported numbers, which could very well mean that the actual number could be much higher as a vast number of rapes and attempted rapes go unreported and unacknowledged.
However, the recent reported case, where the victim was allegedly raped by an imam inside a mosque, serves as the clearest possible evidence that we have a palpable sickness in our society, one that threatens to severely blight the fabric of its functionality.
So what are we going to do about it? When are we going to do something about this sickness?
For far too long in our society, some of those in positions of power have preyed on the helpless with impunity. It is all the more egregious when madrasa imams -- who are supposed to be teachers and educators, and as per their Islamic faith, a beacon of moralistic behaviour -- commit such heinous crimes.
It is not enough to simply say that the perpetrators have to be punished to the fullest extent of the law or that we need policies or stricter law enforcement or reforms in our legal framework -- we certainly require all of those, and with immediacy.
However, there is little doubt that there is a certain toxicity pervading through our society which requires a collective effort to first recognize and then combat it, which means a change in mind-set is needed, combined with an overhaul of a system which allows teachers and imams to abuse their power.