NHRC to form Committee to probe alleged assault, rape on Marma sisters by Bangladeshi Army

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DHAKA/RANGAMATI, FEB 19: The National Human Rights Commission (NHRC) of Bangladesh will be formed a committee to probe the alleged assault and rape on Marma sisters by Bangaladeshi Army in Bilaicchari of Rangamati district, CHT.

In a statement issued by NHRC said that the committee will visit the spot where incident took place, meet and talk to the victims and others concerned. The committee will submit a report within seven working days.

The NHRC appointed convenor of the committee to its member and former Principal of Rangamati Government College, Banchhita Chakma. The other two members are NHRC Director and Additional District and Sessions Judge Md Sharif Uddin, and NHRC Deputy Director Md Gazi Salahuddi.

Upon receiving the report, the NHRC will make recommendations to the government for bringing the culprits to book, said the NHRC after holding a special meeting.

Besides, NHRC Member Banchhita Chakma met the two Marma sisters while under treatment at the Rangamati Sadar Hospital. The Marma sisters -- one aged 18, was allegedly raped, and the other, aged 13, was sexually assaulted allegedly by security forces -- during a drive by a team of security forces in their village in Bilaicchari on January 22. They were admitted to the hospital the same day.

The Chittagong Hill Tracts Commission (CHTC) said the victims were “abducted from Rangamati sadar Hospital by members of the law enforcers on February 15, 2018 in the name of handing them over to their parents.

The CHTC said in a press statement that it is very alarming to know that following their abduction from the hospital, the two victims were taken under the custody of a former member of the Rangamati Hill District Council at his residence in Rangamati town against their will.

Chakma Queen, Her Majesty, Rani Yan Yan, adviser to the Chakma Raja and spouse of Chakma Chief Debasish Roy, and her companions, who were looking after the welfare of the two girls, were “physically assaulted” when they tried to “prevent the abduction”, it noted.

The commission also called for prosecution and punishment of those who committed rape and sexual assault on the Marma girls and attacked Rani Yan Yan.

“We also demand that the state ensures the security of the two Marma young women along with the security of the Chakma Raj family,” it said.

ACN team with inputs from thedailystar.net

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