Court in Bangladesh sentences 16 to death for burning teenage girl to death

Scale of justice
Scale of justice

A court in Bangladesh sentenced 16 people to death on Thursday for the murder of Nusrat Jahan, an 18-year-old girl.

Ms Jahan was set on fire after refusing to withdraw a sexual harassment complaint against the headteacher of the seminary she attended.

The prosecutor, Hafez Ahammad, said the special tribunal dealing with crimes related to the prevention of repression of women and children handed down the punishment to Siraj Ud Dawla, the headmaster of the school and also his associates for killing the 19-year old in the eastern Bangladeshi district of Feni.

Ms Jahan died in a Dhaka hospital on April 10, five days after she was attacked at the Sonagazi Islamia Madrasa, sparking a nationwide outcry against sexual abuse and harassment.

She was taken by two classmates to the rooftop of the school where the accused asked her to withdraw the case against the headmaster, Mr Dawla, according to investigator Banaj Majumder.

He said that when she refused, a group of five people poured kerosene on her and set her on fire.

Investigators had found involvement of 16 people in the murder and sought the death penalty for all of them.

They said the headmaster had plotted the killing from jail after he was arrested in late March when Ms Jahan’s family filed a sexual harassment complaint against him.

A lawyer, Farid Hazari, said all the accused were present when the verdict was pronounced in the crowded court-room amid tight security.



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