NHRC chair demands probeStaff Correspondent
The National Human Rights Commission chair, Mizanur Rahman, on Saturday demanded investigation of the recent disappearance of the Bangladesh Nationalist Party’s organising secretary M Elias Ali.
‘The state has the ultimate responsibility to find out the person who has disappeared irrespective of his political or other identity. Every citizen has the constitutional rights to being secure,’ Mizanur said at a national advocacy meeting at the BRAC Centre Inn in Dhaka.
Elias and his driver went missing at night on April 17. He, along with his driver, went out of the house and the car was found left abandoned near the Banani Park in Dhaka early Wednesday.
He also said the commission found the involvement of law enforcement agencies in some of several cases of disappearance the commission investigated. ‘But the NHRC cannot do anything against it but making recommendations to the home ministry.’ Mizanur said at the meeting on combating violence against women.
Rights organisation Odhikar and the Finnish NGO Foundation for Human Rights KIOS.
Odhikar member Saira Rahman Khan, who presented the keynote paper, said that the law enforcement agencies did not give ‘enough importance’ to most of the violence against women, which means that the state has violated women rights.
Mizanur called on the government to ensure justice against all kinds of violence against women. ‘Slow enforcement of laws is also tantamount to denial of justice and the government should consider this issue.’
The National Press Club general secretary, Syed Abdal Ahmed, said that in the past year, 6,000 incidents of violence against women took place and more than 900 such incidents took place in the past three months.
The Bangladesh National Women Lawyers’ Association vice-president, Fahima Nasrin Munni, called on the government to implement laws rather than enacting laws to protect women.
Former Supreme Court registrar Ikteder Ahmed said that the conviction rate in cases of violence against women was below 4 per cent.
Speakers made several recommendations such as establishment of separate investigation agencies rather than appointment of officers-in-charge as investigation officers, enactment of a victim and witness protection act, mandatory provisions for physicians to immediately issue medical certificates, the time limit for completion of cases of violence against women.
The Swedish ambassador in Dhaka, Anneli Lindahl Kenny, rights activist Farida Akhter, Odhikar secretary Adilur Rahman Khan, Dhaka Metropolitan Police superintendent Rockfar Sultana, Maarit Rostrom of KIOS, Abu Sayeed Khan of Samakal and journalist Shahnaz Munni, among others, also spoke.
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