Female Student Allegedly Burned To Death In Islamic School For Reporting Sexual Harassment
Nusrat Jahan Rafi, a 19-year-old female Bangladeshi student, was allegedly doused with kerosene and burned to death only weeks after she reported being sexually harassed.
A student at a madrassa, or Islamic school, Nusrat was led up to the roof of the school on April 6, where five burqa-clad people allegedly lit her on fire.
The killers reportedly wanted “to make it look like a suicide,” according to Banaj Kumar Majumder, as originally reported by the BBC.
She died days later at a hospital in Dhaka, the Bangladeshi capital, with 80% of her body covered in burns.
Nusrat Jahan Rafi who died after being set on fire was laid to eternal rest at her village home in Feni district of #Bangladesh . She was buried at their family graveyard following a namaz-e-janaza at Mohammad Saber Pilot High School ground around 5:50pm. #justicefornusrat pic.twitter.com/Ce123WRutC
— Ali Ahmad Mabrur (@Mabrur00) April 11, 2019
Nearly two weeks before, on March 27, she was called into the headmaster’s office, where she said the headmaster “touched her in an inappropriate manner.”
After the alleged incident, Nusrat went to the police, where they recorded her with their phones and belittled her, saying that her complaint was “no big deal,” according to the BBC.
Nusrat Jahan Rafi 19, was enrolled in Islamiyya by her parents to learn Qur’an. But the head teacher of the Islamiyya attempted to rape her. She reported to police who told her rape is “no big deal.” She was pressured by Ulama to drop the case. She refused. They set her on fire. pic.twitter.com/2vFt8twAho
— Isa Sanusi (@sanusiix) April 18, 2019
The headmaster was arrested after the incident was reported.
Two male students then started a protest on behalf of the headmaster, and soon a group of people gathered demanding for his release.
So far, 15 people have been arrested, including the two male students who had organized the original protests for the headmaster, according to the BBC report.
While on the roof, her assailants attempted to force her to withdraw her accusation against the headmaster, but she refused. After refusing to withdraw her accusation, they allegedly held her down by the head, poured kerosene on her and lit her on fire.
After the attack, she ran downstairs where other students put out the flames, as reported by the Daily Star.
Allegedly the students had met with the headmaster in prison to organize the attack, as reported by Prothom Alo, a Bangladeshi newspaper.
The Bangladeshi Prime Minister said that “Nusrat’s killers won’t be spared.”
Nusrat’s killers won’t
be spared: PM Sheikh Hasina
Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina today reiterated that killers of Sonagazi madrasa student Nusrat Jahan Rafi will not be spared.#SheikhHasina #Bangladesh #NusratJahanRafi #Rip pic.twitter.com/OvVEPNVSKx
— MD MITON ISLAM (@MDMITONISLAM1) April 15, 2019
In the ambulance, Nusrat recorded a statement on her brother’s phone saying, “The teacher touched me, I will fight this crime till my last breath,” reported by the BBC.
The aftermath of her death has caused massive protests in Bangladesh and people seeking justice for her murder.