Eighteen eminent citizens today condemned the filing of a defamation case against a female employee of Bangladesh Legal Aid and Services Trust (BLAST) by an official of the Border Guard Bangladesh (BGB).
In a joint statement, they said there has been an allegation of sexual violence at a BGB check post in Cox’s Bazar in which the female BLAST employee was the victim.
If a woman, who has been subjected to violence, faces harassment due to misuse of the country’s criminal law, then this will undoubtedly spread further fear among many more similar victims and also discourage them from filing complaints, they said in the joint statement.
They demanded a neutral investigation into the incident that took place on October 8 at the BGB check post, and a speedy trial in this connection.
The citizens also called upon the home ministry and concerned government institutions to immediately formulate a guideline for conducting searches at check posts by law enforcement officials.
Besides, they called for launching an institutional system to file complaints against anomalies during check post searches.
The signatories of the joint statement are: Sultana Kamal, Rasheda K Chowdhury, Khushi Kabir, Shahdeen Malik, Hameeda Hossain, Shireen Haque, ZI Khan Panna, Iftekharuzzaman, Shaheen Anam, Rahnuma Ahmed, Shamsul Huda, Zakir Hossain, Shapan Adnan, Abu Sayeed Khan, Sanjeeb Drong, Noor Khan Liton, Zobaida Nasreen, and Geeti Ara Nasreen.