Wednesday, May 27, 2009

Hosne Ara Begum

From Modern Ghana:
Recently, the government appointed the first ever Officer in Charge (OC) of a police station in the history of the Bangladesh police force. Hosne Ara Begum was assigned as the OC of a police station in the capital city of Dhaka and started working in her new position on May 18, 2009.

Hosne Ara Begum started her challenging career with the Bangladesh police as a sub-inspector back in 1981. In her long 28 years of service, she had worked in many regions of Bangladesh, in different police jurisdictions and departments, including the Intelligence Branch of the Bangladesh police.

The Bangladesh police force introduced its first female officers back 1974, with only 14 officers. After 35 years, the numbers of female police members are now 1,937, and among them 1,331 police constables the minor label member.

A report of the local human rights organization Odhikar says that 5,816 women and children were raped between 2001 and 2007. Among the victims, 636 women were killed and 69 committed suicide after being raped. Also, 1,024 women were victims of acid burns and 1,884 were subjected to dowry-related violence. Of those, 1,241 were killed, 479 were tortured, 61 sustained acid injuries, and 95 committed suicide.

One female police OC alone will not be able to make a large impact. It is equally important that, in Bangladesh's male-oriented society, men should change their actions and attitudes toward women in a positive way.

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