Bangladesh police seek death penalty for 16 over girl’s killing

She was set on fire after complaining of sexual harassment

The Bangladesh police on Wednesday sought the death penalty for 16 people accused of killing a school girl, who was burnt to death by her madrasa principal for reporting a sexual harassment case against him, according to a media report.

The 18-year-old girl was set on fire at her school (madrasa) on April 6 by four burqa-clad assailants, days after she complained against principal Siraj-ud-Daula for inappropriately touching her.

The Police Bureau of Investigation submitted the chargesheet in the court of senior judicial magistrate, seeking death sentence for Siraj-ud-Daula, and 15 others accused of murdering the girl. “The court has set tomorrow (Thursday) for the hearing of the case. Soon after, it will be transferred to be processed under the Women and Children Prevention Repression Act,” Senior Judicial Magistrate Zakir Hossain was quoted as saying by The Dhaka Tribune.

Earlier, Deputy Inspector General of police, Banaj Kumar Majumder, said that all the 16 accused are already in custody. “It has been primarily proven that eight people who are named in the FIR, and eight others, were found to be involved in the murder. We will seek death penalty for them,” he said.

Police has completed their investigation and confirmed that the accused were directly or indirectly involved in the murder. Of them, 12 made a confessional statement before the court, the report said.

According to police, they have gathered information from 92 witnesses, among whom seven have given their statements before the court.

The deceased was tricked into going to the roof of the madrasa where the perpetrators set her on fire for not withdrawing the sexual assault case against the principal.

Her brother Mahmudul Hasan Noman filed a case on April 8 naming eight persons, including the principal as the main accused. Rafi succumbed to injuries on April 10.

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