April 14, 2021


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‘After eating rice for two years, I remember Nusrat’

Nusrat Jahan, a candidate of Sonagazi Islamia Fazil Madrasa examination center in Feni, was set on fire by pouring kerosene on him on Tuesday. On April 8, 2019, he was taken to the roof of the administrative building of the madrasa and set on fire. He died at Dhaka Medical College Hospital on April 10 while undergoing treatment. From then on, mother Shirina Akhter remembered her daughter Nusrat every time she went to eat rice. The pain of not being able to give rice to the girl even after trying to eat rice due to burning of her trachea still makes her groan.

Shirina Akhter said, ‘The girl wanted to drink water and rice while she was in the hospital. I asked the doctors for permission. The doctors forbade me to give water and rice. He said that his trachea was burnt. Water and rice cannot be fed. When I go to eat rice for two years, I remember Nusrat. My daughter could not eat rice or water. I don’t understand whether I am eating rice or poison now. The animals tied my hands and feet and set my daughter on fire. ‘

On October 24, 2019, Judge Mamunur Rashid of the Feni Women and Child Abuse Suppression Tribunal sentenced 16 accused to death. Besides, each accused was fined one lakh rupees. Nusrat’s mother Shirina Akhter demanded speedy execution of the verdict. “I haven’t heard my daughter call for two years now,” she said. I can’t sleep at night. The girl’s burnt body floats in the fire. The girl was groaning in my agony. Then he died. ‘

On March 26, 2019, the principal of Sonagazi Islamia Fazil Madrasa, Siraj Uddaula, called Nusrat to his room and insulted him. His mother Shirina Akhter filed a case with the Sonagazi Model Police Station and the police arrested the principal. As the case was not taken up, on April 8, five people wearing burqas tied Nusrat’s hands and feet, poured kerosene on him and set him on fire. On April 7, his brother Mahmudul Hasan Noman named six people and filed a case against them.

Shah Jahan, the state’s lawyer in the case, said that all the proceedings of the case have reached the High Court on October 29, 2019 for the approval of the death sentence of the accused. Paperbooks (all case documents) were printed on a priority basis. The case was presented to the Chief Justice for hearing. The Chief Justice fixed the bench for hearing the appeal on priority basis. But due to Corona’s situation, the hearing was delayed and the bench was canceled. He hopes that if the situation in Corona returns to normal, a bench will be constituted to hear the case.

Nusrat’s elder brother and plaintiff in the case Mahmudul Hasan Noman told Prothom Alo that he hoped the lower court’s verdict would be upheld in the high court as well. He urged the government to implement the verdict expeditiously.