An anonymous youth icon

Sexual harassments have remained the big elephant in the room. Numbers of such incidents are rising, authorities remain indifferent, and perpetrators receive next to no verdict. On the face of this, fortunately, Bangladeshi youth, though scattered, are forming protests and making the law enforcement to act accordingly. New Age Youth covers one such incident.    

ON THE last week of April, a student of Uttara University was sexually harassed by a trio of transportation worker. Later, students of the university detained 40 buses from that company and forced the owners to go with their terms. On face of their protest, law enforcement captured the perpetrators. On November 2017, New Age, according to a study, said that about 29–35 per cent of men sexually abused women to take out their anger or to punish them, while about 57–67 per cent did it just for fun. According to a UN study, 95.1 per cent of the perpetrators experienced no legal consequences. In a male dominated society, sexual right violators, mainly men, rarely face the law. This has been the case for long, but apparently, not any more. We see glimpse of protests from youths against perverted sexual discriminations and assaults. Law enforcement cannot help but act, on face of cumulative stand. As we see in this case.

‘On Sunday, April 29, around mid-day, I was sexually harassed while coming from Indian visa application centre towards Shyamoli foot over-bridge, in front of Faisal Tower. The perpetrator was a road-side vendor named Shaon, 25. While I was walking along, he noticed me and whistled at me accompanied with making indecent gestures and sexually charged comments. I protested at once, as this kind of behaviour, under no circumstances, is permissible. As I protested, he groped me and tried to physically assault me. In the meantime, another female vendor, Shumi Akhter, 37, joined Shaon, pulled me by the hair, hit me indiscriminately along with verbal abuse. During the scuffle, three to four other vendors came in their support and tried to humiliate me more. I had some friends with me and they rescued me from the aggressive mob. I wonder, if I was alone, I might die a horrible death from the physical assaults. I felt every one of those vendors were potential rapists and capable of doing great harm. I called my family members and my elder brothers came at once and complained the incident to the police. Shumi was detained first, but Shaon already fled the scene by then. However, he was arrested later on. Three to four other unknown perpetrators are still out of the police’s grip. Police have found while taking the case that Shaon, the main culprit, has been involved in similar incidents before. Shumi threatened us by saying that we won’t be able to do anything; she was Shaon’s sister-in-law. Conforming to them, other vendors took their side and suggested us to back off. A group of influential local people arrived after the police to the scene and tried to persuade us not to file any case with the police. Passersby, other vendors and shopkeepers had gathered around the scene, however, none of them protested the injustice that took place right in front of their eyes. I felt that the vendors commit such crimes through a syndicate so that they remain untouched and all of them are members of that vicious nexus. Their behaviour seemed so effortless as if they were used to committing such crimes and covering up such sexual harassment issues on a regular basis, which only backed up my previous assumption. In my case, along with men, a woman had participated as a perpetrator. In order to ensure that no such thing happens with another woman, I am not going to give up till the perpetrators are handed down their sentence. Such harassments and violence again women are at high rise these days, in most incidents, justice is lost in between legislative process. As a result, sexual predators are ultimately encouraged through the failure of law. I want this culture of no-justice and sexual harassment to be stopped. Let men, women and third gender live a safe life, free from sexual harassments.’



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