Noakhali rape not linked to voting: NHRC

Udisa Islam
Published : 21:09, Jan 13, 2019 | Updated : 21:31, Jan 13, 2019

National Human Rights Commission Chairman Kazi Reazul HaqueNoakhali gang rape incident was  out of 'previous enmity' and not linked to the Dec 30 polls, a National Human Rights Commission probe found.

The commission, in their inquiry, found no link with the victim’s initial accounts that she was raped ‘for voting in favour of BNP’. 

“The incident took place due to the previous enmity,” the probe report quoted the victim’s husband from the case statement.

NHRC, however, is unclear over what the enmity really was.

“Neither the case statements nor the witnesses said anything about the polls,” said commission chief Kazi Reazul Hoque before adding that their report was based on the victim and her husband’s statements.

The probe report states that the case statement mentions nothing about the victim being a BNP supporter or she casted her vote for paddy sheaf or any reference to disagreements over polls.

Based on the recorded statements the report also concludes that no proof of Awami League activists’ link with the gang rape was found.

When asked to elaborate on what the ‘old enmity’ was, the probe committee Convenor Al Mahmud Faizul Kabir told Bangla Tribune, ”It’s possible that they had clash with neighbours, or the enmity was over properties or it could have taken place after a heated exchange.”

Asked if the committee tried to figure out what the enmity was, Kabir said, “We heard some accounts while learnt some from media reports,”

Haque told Bangla Tribune that the victim had family enmity.

“According to what our probe committee’s finding no link with voting is mentioned,” added Kabir.