Student burned to death for reporting sexual harassment in Bangladesh

Student burned to death for reporting sexual harassment in Bangladesh

Student burned to death for reporting sexual harassment in Bangladesh

The accused apparently tried to make the incident look like a suicide, a case of self-immolation, but she survived long enough to use her brother's mobile phone to record a video of the attack, reports the Daily Mail.

Nusrat, from a small town 160km south of Dhaka, reported on March 27 that she was called into her headmasters office and repeatedly touched in an inappropriate manner before she ran away, the BBC reported. When she refused, they doused her with kerosene and set on fire, local media BDNews24 reported while citing a statement given by the police. The police officer in charge filmed her statement on his phone as she described her ordeal.

Appearing distressed in the footage - which was later leaked to local media - Nusrat tries to hide her face with her hand, while the policeman is heard calling the complaint "no big deal" and tells her to move her hands from her face. She died four days later from burns covering 80 percent of her body. "One of the killers was holding her head down with his hands, so kerosene wasn't poured there and that's why her head wasn't burned", Majumder told BBC Bengali. The protest was arranged by two male students and local politicians also attended, according to reports. Afterwards, Nusrat's family reported saying they were anxious about her safety.

On 6 April, Nusrat had gone to the school to sit for her final exams.

She was attacked for refusing to back down from an earlier allegation of an attempted sexual assault against her headmaster. They shifted her to Dhaka Medical College Hospital to treat the burns.

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She died on April 15.

"Nusrat Jahan Rafi's death highlights the need for the Bangladesh government to take survivors of sexual assault seriously and ensure that they can safely seek a legal remedy and be protected from retaliation".

"On the day of the attack, a team of seven people-led by Nur Uddin-guarded the gate from the morning, while Nusrat was set afire inside the madrasa building by another five-member team headed by Shahadat Hossain Shamim", Rahim reportedly said in his confession, the Dhaka Tribune reports.

Nusrat's death has sparked protests, as thousands of protesters came on to social media to express their anger.

Rafi had filed her complaint, police arrested the headmaster, but shortly afterward a group of people assembled in the street demanding his release.

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