Rape allegation: The mystery needs to be solved

EditorialProthom Alo illustration

The mystery surrounding the allegation about a raped woman being abducted when she came to the hospital for treatment or examination, needs to be solved.  

According to Prothom Alo report, an undergraduate female student of a college in Khulna was admitted to the one-stop crisis centre (OCC) of Khulna Medical College around 11:15pm on Saturday night.

Her family complained to the physicians that Dumuria upazila parishad chairman Gazi Ejaz Ahmed raped the victim in his personal office located at Shahpur area of the upazila.

The victim’s family stated that the girl had gone to the OCC to collect a report in order to file a case. Divisional coordinator for Bangladesh Society for the Enforcement of Human Rights in Khulna, Mominul Islam said that 10 to 12 people were already waiting in front of the OCC with a microbus.

As soon as that girl came out with the report, she was forced into the automobile. Members of their organisation were also beaten up at that time. While gone to take photographs of the incident, Rudaghara union parishad (UP) chairman Touhiduzzaman pushed some of them away.

However, the victim came to the police station on Sunday night in the same microbus in which she was abducted. She told the police and the journalists there, “I was not abducted. I had gone with my relatives.”

Then the girl and Tohiduzzaman were released from Sonadanga police station. However, nobody is aware of the girl’s whereabouts now.  

How is Touhiduzzaman connected to this incident? If he and his men did not abduct the girl, why did he pick her up from the hospital?

The crucial piece of information is that Touhiduzzaman is a cousin of accused upazila chairman Gazi Ejaz Ahmed. And, if there was no issue of using force while picking the girl up, why were the members of Bangladesh Society for the Enforcement of Human Rights beaten up?

Resident medical officer and OCC coordinator at Khulna Medical College Hospital, Suman Roy said that the physicians of the gynecology department conducted the medical examination of the girl in context of the rape allegation.

Evidences that were found in that examination have been recorded. And the physicians concerned will submit that in the report format later, he added.

We believe there are inconsistencies between a girl coming to the one-stop crisis centre with allegation of rape and the series of incidents that followed. The whole incident has raised a lot of questions.  

The influence and power held by the person primarily accused of rape is significant here. Otherwise, why would a girl who can come to the hospital for medical examination accusing of rape, go missing after the incident?

Where the girl is right now? Is she hiding out of fear or not? The law and order enforcement agencies have to play a responsible role here and take all necessary measures to ensure the girl’s safety.

There needs to be proper investigation of the incident. When the report of the medical examination conducted on the girl is submitted, a lot will be clarified. We hope that the law and order enforcement agencies will show a sense of responsibility and solve the mystery.