According to the documentation of Odhikar, on human rights violations which occurred during 01 to 28 February 2007, as many as 17 persons were killed by the law enforcement agencies. Of them, 9 were killed by the Rapid Action Battalion (RAB), 5 by police, 1 by the army, 1 by joint forces and 1 by navy.
It may be noted that out of 17 people, who were killed by law enforcement agencies from February 01 to 28, 2007, 8 persons were killed in ‘Crossfire’. Among the crossfire victims, 6 people were killed by RAB, 2 by police.
Out of the 17 victims, 9 were killed in various ways other than crossfire by law enforcement agencies. Among them 1 was reportedly killed by army torture, 1 died in the hospital after being tortured by police, 1 was shot by RAB, 2 died in hospital after being arrested by RAB, 1 was arrested by the joint forces and died in hospital, 2 dacoits were shot dead by police and 1 was allegedly tortured to death by navy.
Among the 17 persons who were killed, 2 from Biplobi Communist Party, 1 from Jubodal (BNP), 1 from New Biplobi Communist Party, 2 from Purbo Banglar Communist Party, 1 from Purbo Banglar Communist Party (Red Flag), 1 from Sorbohara Party, 2 were from Sromojibi Mukti Andolan, 1 was a cultivator, 3 were alleged criminals, 1 was detained bus driver, 2 were alleged Dacoits.
Besides, 01-28 February a total of 8 persons died in jail custody due to illness. From 01-28 February 2007 a total of 43,084 persons were arrested across the country. It is noted that in Bangladesh, there are 11 central jails and 55 district jails and their total capacity is only 27,227. Moreover, there have been 8 persons reportedly killed and 103 injured due to political violence this month.
The report covering the human rights situation all over the country also shows that 2 journalists were assaulted and 4 were threatened during the month of February, 2007. Throughout the country, total 37 persons were the victims of rape. Among them 17 were children and 20 were women. Of them, 7 women were the victims of gang rape and 6 including 3 children were killed after being raped.
Since 01-28 February 2007, a total of 20 women were victims of dowry. Of them, 13 women were killed, 6 were tortured and 1 committed suicide. During this period, 61 children were victims of human rights violations. Of them, 30 were killed, 6 were injured, 17 were raped, 1 was abducted, 2 were victims of acid throwing, 1 committed suicide and 7 went missing. A total of 10 persons including 2 children, 8 women were victims of acid attacks across the country in this period. Among them 1 died due to acid burn. Apart from this, between 01-28 February 2007, a total of 6 Bangladeshi people were killed, 4 were injured and 5 abducted by Indian Border Security Force (BSF).
During 01-28 February 2007, a total 242 persons were killed throughout the country. Odhikar also expresses its concern regarding the arrests made under the Special Powers Act of 1974 in February. It also expresses concern about detaining people without charges, which is a violation of human rights. It further expresses its grave concern at the continuation of the slum eviction drives rendering thousands of poor people shelter less without offering them any housing alternatives. Odhikar has prepared this report on the basis of 11 national dailies and its own fact-finding reports.
ASM Nasiruddin Elan