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Will violence against women decrease in the new year?

by Afonso
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January is going on. There are many fears and possibilities in everyone around the new year. For women, the desire to spend an innocent year seems to work the most.

Violence against women is a daily occurrence in this country. Women are still neglected and oppressed in this society. It is this neglect, torture or physical and emotional violence that inevitably paints the map of women’s desires around the New Year. Regardless of rights conscious-unconscious, women unknowingly hope that in the new year, no woman should be victimized anywhere in the country.

Almost every day of the year in this country, women are subjected to torture at some place or the other. As I am writing now, even at this time some incidents of violence against women are being organized in some parts of the country. Now more than ever the areas of violence against women have increased. Women are subjected to violence at home, at work, in transport – everywhere. Earlier, when women did not leave the house, they were victims of violence within the family. Now everywhere women are victims of violence.

In 2023, the incidence of violence against women can be said to be at the same rate as in the previous years. Some of these incidents have been protested and agitated. But in most cases of violence, the perpetrators were out of touch. Due to lack of justice, lengthy judicial system, violence against women has increased continuously.

Now the pattern of violence against women has also changed. 2023 was no exception. In the past year, women were tied to trees, housewives were burnt with kerosene and petrol, torture for dowry, brutal flogging and stone pelting in illegal arbitration, schoolgirls, college girls, housewives were hacked to death, and burnt to death after rape.

According to Human Rights Culture Foundation (MSF) statistics, 623 women and 768 children and adolescents were sexually abused in 2023. 231 incidents of rape occurred among violence against women. Apart from this, 117 women were gang-raped, 16 women were raped-murdered and 149 women were sexually harassed. 10 women were affected by acid throwing. Apart from this, 72 disabled women were raped. On the other hand, 42 disabled women and children were victims of other violence. Last year, a total of 28 cases of rape and attempted rape were compromised by the Samajpatis. In these cases, the socialists disregarded the prevailing law and illegally settled through arbitration, which on the one hand favored the oppressor, and humiliated the victim.

Sultana Kamal, Founder President of Human Rights Culture Foundation (MSF), said, ‘There is no doubt that there have been significant developments and transitions in both the real life and mental world of women. But it was not easy. Women have to come to this position by struggling with various adverse conditions. As a whole, various forces of the country and society have always supported them. However, most of the time there was strong hostility towards women’s freedom and women’s rights, especially women’s equal rights. The main reason for this is that the state managers have not done the work with sincerity, which was necessary to build the culture for the implementation of all the commitments made at the political and state level from time to time. Many, regardless of party, have compromised with anti-feminist and anti-women’s liberation forces to stay in power. As a result, despite hundreds of efforts, we have not reached a satisfactory level in terms of reducing or stopping violence against women or empowering women.

Sultana Kamal thinks that in order to stop violence against women, it is necessary to ensure that the existing laws made in favor of women are properly implemented. At the same time, discriminatory family laws against women should be repealed and uniform family or civil laws should be enacted. The international laws and agreements that Bangladesh has signed for the protection of women must be implemented. Apart from this, reservations should be removed from the reserved clauses of the CDO. Strong steps must be taken to develop an attitude in education and social culture that respects women and recognizes women’s rights. Its main responsibility is the government. Civil society and organizations will also play an important role in this regard.

The country has quite strict laws to prevent violence against women. However, the administration does not play an effective role in crime prevention and control. According to Bangladesh Mahila Parishad’s 2023 report on torture of women and girls, a total of 2937 women and girls were victims of torture from January to December 2023. Out of these 639 were raped, 140 including 69 girls were gang-raped. 34 people including 25 girls were killed after rape. 14 people including 9 daughters committed suicide due to rape. Besides, 98 people including 68 girls were tried to rape. Apart from this, 149 people were victims of sexual harassment, 93 people were victims of harassment. Apart from this, 122 people were subjected to torture due to dowry. 52 of them were killed due to dowry. A total of 231 people were victims of physical abuse. 32 people were subjected to physical abuse due to domestic violence.

Violence against women is not a new phenomenon. It has been happening for ages. In earlier days it was difficult for women to leave the house. Women are now leaving home, working, conquering mountains, achieving success in sports. So women will go far if they get a suitable environment. Professor of Women and Gender Studies Department of Dhaka University thinks so. Tanya Haque

Member of the National Human Rights Commission. Tanya thinks that to eliminate violence against women, family education should be ensured first. The education given by the family in childhood is the greatest education. Therefore, how the parents should teach the child, needs to be recorded in the book. Parenting plays a huge role in a child’s life. Tanya said, ‘I think people don’t improve mentally after 10 to 14 years. Childhood is the most important part of human life. Human behavior depends on the environment in which he grows up. Education plays an important role there. It is at this time that the child should be developed as a real person.

This professor of Dhaka University thinks, ‘In the era of information technology development, we are learning how to kill, kidnap or torture each other very easily on social media. Although we shout to stop violence against women, we are not stopping various means of stopping violence against women.

Member of the National Human Rights Commission. Tanya Haque also said, ‘Home is a place of passage for people. House means family, then society through family. Society opens the doors of education to people after the family. To reduce violence against women, the attitude of the people of this country needs to change. Who is doing violence against women? Maybe some men are doing these things. Where are these men learning from? They learn from their family or society. If family members teach him you have mother, sister in your house. Will respect them. If a man learns to respect his mother and sister, he will learn to respect an outside woman too. If you learn to respect women, violence against women will also decrease in the society.’


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