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Bangladesh: Investigate Rishipara cover-up | Editorial, Dhaka Tribune

19 January 2014

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(Dhaka Tribune - 19 January 2014)

A new and proper investigation into this attack must be carried out as a matter of priority

We are appalled by the reports that police in Rishipara, Jessore have allegedly tried to cover up the gang-rapes of five women from minority communities.

Investigations into this case reveal that three of the women were encouraged by officers to retract their statements in order to make it appear that there were only two victims, an account which directly contradicts the FIR and witness statements.

To make matters worse, local police delayed getting medical tests, thus muddying the evidence and reducing the chance of getting accurate results.

Furthermore, while two people have been arrested, they are not the suspects which were recognised as the attackers, so it appears the actual culprits are still at-large.

With so many loose threads, and alleged interference, a new and proper investigation into this attack must be carried out as a matter of priority, to ensure the culprits are held to account for their contemptible actions.

It is incumbent upon law enforcement officers to carry out their duties responsibly and act to ensure that victims and their families get justice, irrespective of who they are or what they believe. An investigation into the cover-up must be conducted. Any and all officers found to have acted beneath the standard required by the law and expected by citizens, must be held publicly accountable.

No one should be above the law, and anyone who breaks any law must be brought to justice.
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