Metropolitan

IMPUNITY, WEAK TRIAL PROCESS BLAMED

70 children are raped each month in Bangladesh

Manusher Jonno Foundation (MJF) officials during a press conference at the National Press Club on Sunday, April 28, 2019.

Special Correspondent
Child rape has increased by 20% in Bangladesh with over 234 children raped in the first four months of the current year.
On an average, 70 children were raped each month in Bangladesh, higher than ever recorded.
According to the statistics, 1,006 children were subjected to abuse other than murder last year.
At least 271 children were killed or died after they were raped or subjected to sexual and physical abuse in Bangladesh in 2018, Manusher Jonno Foundation (MJF) said on Sunday.
MJF disclosed the statistics during a press conference at the National Press Club. The statistics were collected from six national newspapers of Bangladesh. MJF Executive Director Shaheen Anam chaired the program.
According to the statistics, 1,006 children were subjected to abuse other than murder last year.
Expressing concerns over a rising number of children becoming involved in criminal activities, MJF said 401 children were found to be involved in crimes in 2018, as compared to 128 in 2017.
Furthermore, there were 197 suicide attempts among children last year, out of which 152 died. In 2017, there were 210 suicide attempts among children, out of which 203 died.
MJF program coordinator Rafiza Shahin said the main reasons behind the suicide attempts are unexpected results at exams, conflicts with family members, love affairs, stalking, rape, child marriage, abuse by teachers, and depression.
She added that children aged from 13-18 are more prone to committing suicide.
Meanwhile, 414 children died in road accidents and 133 were injured in 2018, while 376 children died in road accidents in 2017.
In addition, MJF found that 129 children were physically or psychologically abused by their teachers in 2018. This includes 70 who were physically abused, 33 who were sexually abused, and 17 who were raped. There were seven incidents of attempted rape and one kidnapping.
Moreover, 433 children suffered rape, gang rape, or sexual harassment last year. A total 356 were raped, while 22 children were killed after being raped and one child was killed after being sexually abused. There were at least 53 attempts to rape children.
Children aged from 7-12 are more vulnerable to rape attempts, while children aged from 13-18 are mostly subjected to sexually harassment, Rafiza Shahin said.
In 2017, 573 children were raped or sexually harassed throughout the country, including 472 children who were raped and 18 who were killed after rape. While the number of rapes decreased from 2017 to 2018, it can be seen that the number of murders after rape increased.
MJF Executive Director Shaheen Anam said the level of child abuse in the country is still disturbing, despite improvements in some areas.
He also said the number of incidents of child abuse may be much higher than reported.
Director of Bangladesh Shishu Odhikar Forum Abdus Shahid Mahmud urged the strict implementation of laws in order to reduce child abuse.
Child rape has increased by 20%
Meanwhile, Bangladesh Shishu Adhikar Forum (BSAF) has stated that child rape has increased by 20% in Bangladesh compared to 2018 as 234 children were raped in the first four months of the current year.
On an average, 70 children were raped each month in Bangladesh, higher than ever recorded. Additionally, a staggering number of 115 children were raped on April alone, said a BSAF press release.
BSAF Prepared the report hrough compilation of news reports on child rape as published in 15 leading dailies.
However, the actual number of incidences could be much higher as many such cases remain unreported, it said.
Impunity, weak charge sheet, delay in the trial proceedings, lack of witness, pressure from powerful people are responsible for the rise of such crimes, it added.
“It is important that such offences become non-bailable,” it said.
Most of all, the society is suffering from moral decay which has made such incidents of violence rampant, BSAF stated.

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