A school girl was burned to death in Bangladesh after she reported a sexual harassment.
She was burned on the orders of her school principal, who she reported for sexually harassing her.
The death of 19 year old Nusrat Jahan Rafi last week sparked protests across Bangladesh. The prime minister promised to prosecute all those involved.
Nusrat was lured to the rooftop of the Islamic seminary she attended. Her attackers asked her to withdraw the sexual harassment complaint she had filed with police. When she refused, she was soaked in kerosene and set on fire.
Police said that one of the 17 people arrested in connection with her death had accused the school’s principal of ordering the attack.
The teacher “told them to put pressure on Rafi to withdraw the case or kill her if she refused”. Senior police superintendent, Mohammad Iqbal, who is leading the investigation, reported.
Rafi had gone to the police in March to report the sexual harassment, and a leaked video shows the local police station chief registering her complaint but dismissing it as “not a big deal”.
Superintendent Iqbal said at least 5 of those under arrest, including 3 of Rafi’s classmates, had tied her up with a scarf before setting her on fire.
“The plan was to pass the incident off as a suicide. But it fell through after Rafi managed to come downstairs while on fire because the scarf burnt and freed her hands and feet.”
Rafi suffered burns to 80 percent of her body and died in hospital on April 10.
But she recorded a video before her death, repeating her allegations against the principal.
“The teacher touched me, I will fight this crime till my last breath.” She also identified some of her attackers.
Sexual assault cases has increased in Bangladesh because authorities have failed to prosecute attackers.