5 get death penalty for rape for first time in country
Published: 12:36 PM, 15 October 2020 Updated: 02:40 PM, 15 October 2020
A court in Tangail on Thursday has sentenced death penalty to five accused in the case of gang-raping a madrasa student at Chhabbisha village in Bhuapur Upazila of Tangail. At the same time, each of them fined Tk 1 lakh. This is the first death sentence since the ordinance on the death penalty for rape.
District Women and Child Abuse Repression Tribunal Judge Khaleda Yasmeen announced the verdict.
The convicts are — Sagar Chandra, Sujan Moni Rishi, Rajan, Sanjit, and Gopi Chandra Sheel. Among them, Sanjit and Gopi Chandra Sheel have already been arrested, however, the remaining accused are still absconding.
Tangail court inspector Tanvir Ahmed said two accused, Sanjit and Gopi Chandra Sheel, were present in the court when the verdict was announced.
Special PP Nasimul Akhter of the Women and Children Repression Prevention Tribunal handled the case for the state.
Advocate Ataur Rahman Azad, general secretary of the Tangail district branch of the Human Rights Implementation Agency, started the case and provided legal assistance to the victim.
Special PP Nasimul Akhter said the madrasa student from Bhuapur Upazila got acquainted with accused Sagar Chandra Sheel over the phone in 2012. On January 15 of the same year, Sagar tactically took her to Elenga and went to his friend Rajan’s house in Charal Jani village in Madhupur. There, four of his friends pressured the student to get married. The girl rejected his offer saying Sagar was a Hindu.
For this, Sagar forcibly raped the student that night. Later on January 17, they took her to the banks of the Bangshai River and gang-raped her. The next morning, with the help of the locals, the girl was rescued by her relatives, she also said.
The student filed a case against the convicts with Bhuapur police station on January 18. Later, the police arrested Sujan Moni Rishi and sent him to court. On January 19, accused Sujan gave a confessional statement.
Sujan admits that Sagar, Rajan, Sanjit and Gopi Chandra’s involvement in the incident. Police filed a chargesheet against the five after investigation. Judicial proceedings began on October 29, 2015, with the formation of charges against the accused.
Plaintiff’s lawyer Abdur Razzak said they were satisfied with the verdict.
It is to be noted that the policy and final approval was given to amend the ‘Women and Children Repression Prevention Act-2000’ in the form of an ordinance in a virtual Cabinet meeting chaired by Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina on October 12. Then on Tuesday, President M Abdul Hamid issued the law as an ordinance.