A disabled woman was raped reportedly by a railway staff on a moving train in Moulvibazar’s Sreemangal upazila. The accused rail employee, Jabed, 25, is an assistant generator operator on the Shurma Mail train.
The rape survivor filed a rape case against Jabed with the Sreemangal Railway police station. Upon hearing the victim's cries, passengers captured Jabed immediately and handed him over to Sreemangal railway police.
According to the passengers, while the Dhaka-bound Shurma Mail train was passing through the Lawachara national park, Jabed reportedly took the victim into the generator room forcefully and raped her on Friday night.
Sreemangal railway police station's Officer-in-Charge (OC) Md Alamgir Hossain said: “Passengers captured the accused as he was trying to run away after raping the victim in the train. The case is under investigation and the accused was sent to jail after appearing before court.”
The survivor was sent to Moulvibazar Sadar Hospital for necessary medical attention, he added.
Death penalty for rape proving ineffectual
A total of 1,627 rape cases were documented last year. Fifty-three of them were killed after rape and 14 of the survivors took their own lives, according to Ain O Shalish Kendra (ASK) data.
The data was collected from various newspaper reports. But the actual number is believed to be much higher as many victims choose not to report sexual assaults fearing their safety.
Bangladesh amended the law last November making death penalty the highest punishment for rape amid countrywide outrage sparked by gang rapes in Sylhet MC College hostel and Noakhali.
On October 12, the cabinet approved the amendment. On October 13, the president promulgated an ordinance in this regard.
Between Oct 13 and Dec 31, at least 160 incidents of rape were reported, ASK also said.
Human Rights Watch said: “Perpetrators are rarely held accountable. The conviction rate for rape in Bangladesh is below 1%.”