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  • » 04/17/2014, 00.00


    Bangladesh, tribal Catholic gang raped: Christians and Muslims demand justice

    Sumon Corraya

    The rapists were four Muslim youths. The victim , 21, survived and reported her rapists , "I want them to go on trial". Student activist denounces : "When it comes to tribal women police do not want to deal with the case ."

    Dhaka (AsiaNews) - More than 100 Christians and Muslims demonstrated yesterday in Dhaka against the gang rape suffered by a young Catholic woman. The violence took place on April 14 in Mohammadour , a district of the capital, during the celebration of the Bengali New Year. She was attacked by four Muslim boys . The victim, a 21-year old ethnic Garo , survived and reported them.

    The young woman called Mary Thigidi Purnima and is native of the parish of Mariamnagar , in the diocese of Mymensingh . She works in Dhaka as a beautician in the "Person" beauty center.

    On the day of the attack the victim was going to celebrate with a cousin when four Muslim boys accosted her, dragged her away and raped her. After the violence Purnima was able to call her brother in law, who was looking for her . After finding her, the girl filed a complaint against her attackers and one of them - Alif Ahmed - has already been arrested . The police is on the trail of the others.

    The girl and her family do not feel protected: the relatives of the rapists continue to threaten them, warning them to drop the charges. But Purnima explains: "Many girls do not report rapes out of fear, but that's why so many perpetrators remain free. Instead I want them to be brought before the courts".

    Among those present at yesterday's event were many Christian students, and even some Muslims. The protest was organized by the Bangladesh Garo Chatra Sangathan (BGCS), a Garo tribal student organization. The President Sabuj Nokrek told AsiaNews : " If the tribal women are raped , the police do not want to deal with the case. The don't investigate properly or provide security to the families of the victims. This worries us".

    According to data released during the protest , since the beginning of 2014 at least nine tribal women have suffered sexual violence , and two of them were killed after the attack . In 2013, a total of 67 tribal women and girls were raped .


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    See also

    27/05/2015 BANGLADESH
    Bangladesh, two men arrested for the rape of tribal Catholic girl
    The accused have confessed to having planned the violent attack. The High Court in Dhaka puts the police under investigation for negligence.

    08/03/2011 BANGLADESH
    Power games of tribal and official authorities behind suicide of raped Christian girl
    The girl, aged 14, was raped by nine men a year ago. The police arrested a local committee to which the girl's father had turned to seek justice. The tribal ruling provided for the payment of a sum to the family. The parish priest jailed for having mediated, rapists still at large.

    25/05/2015 BANGLADESH
    All religious groups condemn the rape of a Catholic tribal woman
    The 21-year old ethnic Garo is currently recuperating at the Tejgaon's Victim Support Centre. Five rapists are still at large. The attack took place on minibus in the capital. The Bishop of Mymensingh, where the young woman hails from, calls for "exemplary punishment” for the attackers.

    13/04/2016 14:40:00 BANGLADESH
    Bangladesh’s land grabs: mosque built on Hindu-owned land

    A group of 20 Hindus held a press conference in the capital to appeal to the prime minister. Land grabbers seize land from minorities. If the victims protest, their lives are threatened and women are in danger of rape.

    19/02/2018 16:20:00 BANGLADESH
    Garo Christians attacked, robbed in Dhaka complain attackers want to ‘steal our land’

    Christian tribal organisations organised a protest in the capital, but police prevented them from doing so in front of the National Museum to censor the fact that soldiers raped two sisters.

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