From The Daily Star:
This is a tragedy that the whole nation should mourn and protest. The national conscience was savagely traumatised. Hena Akhter is a victim of the gender discrimination that prevails in our country. It is an indictment of the poverty that the underprivileged of our country suffer, and the injustice and bigotry that hold them in thralldom.
Much can be said about the law of the land, the uprightness of the judiciary and the vigilance of our non-government organisations. But the bestiality continues to prey on the underprivileged of the society. Only tragedies like that of Hena come to the light. We rise when a life in its bloom is lost.
It is a fact that Bangladesh is a predominantly Muslim country. But there are Muslim countries like Malaysia and Turkey that can pride themselves on their civilised societies. Our problem is that ours is an impoverished country with a large population caught in illiteracy. The rural society carries all the vestiges of feudal setup with lesser lords making the most of political power, money and religion. They strike down the weaker of the tribe. Darbesh Kha and his daughter Hena Akhter of Chamta village of Naria Upazilla belonged to this struggling lot. So, Hena was hunted down and the most sanctified among the weaponry, fatwa, was used.
- See these links for more on Hena Akhter:
- The Guardian - Bangladesh whipping case: three doctors investigated for claiming teenage girl had no signs of injury.
- The Independant - Hena's death: Probe body completes task
- The Mid-Day - Bangladeshi family demands justice for 'whipped to death' raped daughter
- CNN - Bangladesh court orders fresh probe into death of teenage girl