NHRC probe into rape begins on March 11

Staff Correspondent | Published at 11:20pm on March 07, 2021

The National Human Rights Commission is launching a countrywide inquiry to find out causes behind the increasing number of rape incidents and ways to prevent the menace.

On March 11, an eight-member team formed by the commission will begin their field visit in Sylhet division where they will interview some of the rape convicts in jail.

The inquiry committee was formed in January amid an alarming increase of rape incidents and sexual abuses throughout the country.

The committee chief and the commission’s member Jesmin Ara Begum told New Age that the inquiry was a year-long initiative and they would begin their field inquiry into rape incidents from Sylhet division.

She said that they would visit at least 32 districts and talk with victims, their families, rape accused, rape convicts, police investigators, prosecutors and judges involved in trails of rape cases before submitting a comprehensive report.

Commission chairman Nasima Begum said, ‘The initiative is a national level inquiry. We are optimistic that the research-based findings will reveal causes of rapes and ways to curb it.’

The number of rape has increased in the past five years since 2016, according to a report submitted to the police headquarters to the High Court on Wednesday.

The report said that 26,695 rape cases were filed across the country in the past five years from January 2016 to October 2020.

The committee is formed of rights activists, academics having expertise in legal and women rights issues and hospital officials dealing with rape victims.

The committee will talk with concerned authorities to ensure the witnesses’ presence as witnesses in rapes cases often do not appear before the court during trial stages.

‘We will talk to rape accused and convicts to understand what leads them to such heinous crimes,’ Jesmin said.