Violence Against Women in Bangladesh

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against women is an ultimate curse for the women in all over the world. But in
Bangladesh this is more over curse for the women from their very beginning to
death. So, as a assignment in the discipline of state and violence this topic
would be more fruitful than any other one. In my assignment papers I will make
a structure and within my structure I will show an introductory aspect of  violence against women in Bangladesh and its
definition types like- domestic violence, tortured by husband/wife beating,
dowry related violence, tortured by in-laws, polygamy, marital rape, high risk
pregnancy, suicide tortured by family members, incest and rape by intimate male
relations, public violence, violence in educational institute, kidnapping and
abduction, eve teasing, child a bush, rape, trafficking in women and children,
acid throwing, victimization by illegal fatwa, work place violence, its
consequence on our economical, social, political, cultural life, conclusion and
sources/ references. 


against women, the most pervasive human rights violation, regardless of any
distinction as to geography, culture or wealth, is a great concern for the
present time. It is quite difficult to mention the accurate number of survivors
or victims of violence all over the world but it can be said that the numbers
of survivors, including reported and unreported are in-numerous.

Bangladesh, with the blessing of modern medical science this is now possible to
know the sex of the infant by ultra sonogram. Generally an expected baby
creates a new hope for the whole family but it is a common picture that when
the family members know that the expected baby will be a female, suddenly all
the hope of the family seems to disappear. The mother of a baby girl gets
comparatively less importance, care, food even medical care. Sometimes the mother
of the expected baby is induced to abort. Since the betterment of that expected
baby is totally dependent on her mother, so these maltreatment directly affect
her growth.

The women in
Bangladesh facing several types of violence frequently .Such as

  • Domestic violence

by husband

related violence

by in-laws



risk pregnancy


by family members

and rape by intimate male relation

  • Public violence
  • Violence in educational
  • Kidnapping and abduction
  • Eve teasing
  • Child abuse
  • Rape
  • Trafficking in women and
  • Acid throwing
  • Victimization by illegal fatwa
  • Work
    place violence


the outset we should understand the concept of Violence against women’-clearly
for a better understanding of this report. The word Violence’ means exertion of
physical force so as to injure or abuse another, while the phrase
“violence against women” refers to many types of harmful behavior
directed at women and girls because of their sex. In 1993, the

Nations offered the first official definition of such violence when the General
Assembly adopted the Declaration on the Elimination of Violence Against Women,
1993. According to Article 1 of the Declaration on the Elimination of Violence
against Women, 1993 violence against women includes:

Any act of
gender-based violence that results in, or is likely to result in.
physical”, sexual12 or psychological’3 harm or ‘suffering to women,
including threats of such acts, coercion or arbitrary deprivations of liberty,
whether occurring in public or private life.

the above definition, we can get the reference of three types of violence i.e.
physical, sexual and psychological violence. It is important to note here that
this definition includes threat also i.e. actual act of violence is not
necessary, mere threat of such acts will be enough to constitute violence.

Domestic Violence

A home, a family should be a place of support, should be a peaceful place-not a place of cruelty and brutality. Literarily, domestic
violence is that kind of violence which is committed against a woman by her
near and dear male relations. All over the world, one of the most common forms
of violence against women is abuse by their husbands or other intimate male
partners and in-laws.
Partner violence occurs in all countries and transcends social,
economic, religions, and cultural groups. This is common and in most of the
societies and it is often said that women should tolerate that.

Torture by Husband/Wife Beating:

The most frequently occurred
and common from of domestic violence against woman in Bangladesh is torture by
the husband. It is certain that actual incidents of family violence will never
be quantified as victims are unprepared to complain about her situation. Under
the prevalent socio-economic cultural conditions women are compelled to be
submissive, dwelling in the margins of a patriarchal society. A further factor
therefore contributing to wife abuse in Bangladesh is women’s own
submissiveness. She submits and accepts the violent home because of the
prevailing norms and values that emphasis the marital home as the only place
for a woman. The reinforces the growing feeling that here is no way out to free
herself from a violent home.

Dowry Related Violence

It is not
possible to find out when and where the custom of dowry was first started. Though
in this Indo-Pak subcontinent this custom is very common but historically
‘Kulin Kul Sarbaswa’, a play, in 1854, sparked off social
awareness regarding the dowry issue. It was an indictment against dowry system.
In 1904, Begum Rokeya Shakhawat Hossain, pioneer of female education in
Bangladesh strongly condemned men who demanded dowry.

Torture by In-Laws

In Bangladesh,
after the marriage, literarily a woman leaves) her own natural family forever.
When a young bride moves into her in-laws house after marriage, she arrives
with very little status. She is expected to adjust very quickly to her
husband’s household where is placed under severe restrictions of her mother in
-law. Often the mother and sister in-law torture the new bride for different
reasons. One of the main reasons of torture is dowry. Sometimes the poor
economic condition of her marital family, trifling matters tike failure to
provide hot food or sleeping at odd time, her independence attitude tally up
the list.


Polygamy is a practice
where a married man wants to marry for another time even after the existence of
his wife or wives in the house. The practice of polygamy is permitted in a
certain limit in Bangladesh. One Muslim male has to take free consent i.e.
permission of his existing wife if he wants to marry for another time. Though
the law provides that the husband has to take the consent of his existing wife
but in most of the times this provision of law becomes meaningless as a woman
is forced physically and mentally to give her consent. To obtain the consent of
his wife, a man can also blackmail her emotionally. Often he threatened to
divorce her if she does not give the consent.

Marital Rape

Marital rape
is “just one extension of domestic violence”. It can be defined as any
unwanted intercourse or penetration with the wife obtained by force, threat of
force, or when the life is unable to give consent. Women who are raped by their
husbands are likely to be raped many times. Marital rape can of three types,
i.e. force only rape, battering rape, sadistic /obsessive rape.

High Risk Pregnancy

It has been
believed from the very beginning of world history that one healthy mother means
a healthy nation. So, women who are going to be mother deserve special, care,
and attention. It is. also found that in societies where the women enjoy higher
status, toere the rate of maternal morality is comparatively low Bangladesh
still has one of the highest maternal*mortality rates in the world. To ensure
such a society and to make people aware 28m May of every year has been observed
in Bangladesh as the “Safe Maternity Day”.


The most
shocking victim of suicide in the year 2003 young girl named Rumi of Khulna.
This was very unfortunate that the accused of Rumi’s suicide case, the police of
Dawlatpur Police Station for another offence arrested Uony Molla, Mizan and
Babu and they were enlarged on bail ‘ five days of their arrest and committed
the crime just after days from getting their bail. Besides, the death of a
schoolgirl, Alpina of Kishoregonj, who committed suicide to save from eve teasing
of local street boys, also touched nations

Incest and Rape by Intimate Male Relations

The concept
incest is used to mean and include a sexual “experience by a family member
or by an extended family member46 that damaged the women or female child. This
is a scary .experience for the women or female child that they are abused by
the persons who are very near and dear arid respected persons to them. This
type of violence is going o turn into epidemic but they are not sufficiently
published since everybody fears or hates to share the experience of these types
of incidents with others.

Violence in Educational Institute

In the year
2003, the news containing the information of violence against female
students   in   the all levels   of educational institutes were very frequent
and broke all the previous records. Most of the time, the teachers were the
perpetrators of this type of violence. Sometimes, the hostel Super”8 and sometime
officials of management were also responsible.
Serious   incidents   that were happened   in
Schools49, Medical
College50, University 51 were reported. In Dhaka City, writing of a book that
contained immoral, unethical and unfair lines by the head of a College gave rise
to a scandalous event. After the publication of the books, before public
protest and reaction the teacher was resign from his workplace.

Kidnapping and Abduction

537 women and
children were reported to be kidnapped and abducted in 2003. Once again, the
main targets were the teenagers and children. 361 children were kidnapped
176 women were reported to be abducted. On the

evening of
17th April, 2003, Shamsunnahar (17) of Feni was abducted from her home by three
young men and was raped and committed suicide.


Children are
the flowers from heaven. They need special care for the growth of their tender
age. But due to the-socio-economic condition they have to sell their labour for
money But most of the cases they are tortured for trifling matters I hey are
treated like slaves. This is shocking to mention here that the perpetrators of
this type of violence are mainly the most learned group of the society. This
can be a debate whether these perpetrators can be called   “White
Collar Criminal”.


The word
‘rape’ has not been defined in the Penal Code, Ixf860. But section 375 of the
Penal Code, 1860 mention few circumstances the presence of which will be
consider Ss rape. Rape is one of the serious forms of offence committed
the person of n woman. The consequence of rape is so severe that the law
permits, under section 100 of the Penal Code, 1860 the victim of rape to cause
death of the assailant. Even after this provision of law, when the law
considers this offence very serious, the numbers of rape cases are not limiting
but increasing.

Trafficking in Women and Children

The business
of trafficking is very profitable to run the modern ‘slave industry’. The women
and children trafficked are used in many immoral activities including
prostitution, pornography, organ transplantation. Women and children trafficked
and used for such purposes are called ‘white slave’ in modern sense.

According to
a survey by South Asian Association for Regional Cooperation (SAARC), in every
year, at least 12 thousand Bangladesh women and children are trafficked to
India. With the promise to give the job of domestic worker, with tourist visa,
in every month almost 200 Bangladeshi women are trafficked in the Middle
Eastern Asian countries.

Acid Throwing

After the
groundbreaking judgment of the High Court Division67, ‘the general citizens of
Bangladesh becoming more aware about Fatwa and as a result the number of
illegal Fatwa is comparatively few in recent years. In 2003, 46 cases were
reported in relation to Fatwa. The main grounds where the Fatwa were given were
oral divorce, premarital pregnancy, rape, allegation of illegal relationship,
allegation of illegal work, male entry into house, refused sexual relationship,
kidnapping, love, case file on rape etc. The consequences of Fatwa were hilla”
marriage, lashes, social boycott, ‘deserted in village, physical/mental
torture, abortion etc. The following table graph presents the glimpse of Fatwa
related issues in 2003.

Sources and references

01, Ameen,
Nusrat: Wife Abuse in Bangladesh, june 2004, published by BNWLA

02, Committee
on the Elimination of discrimination against women. May 19999, recommendations
for government action regarding article 12, paragraph 31, twentieth session.

siddique,dr.dina m, globalization, sexual harassment and workers’ rights in
Bangladesh, a study of center for policy dialogue, quoted by farid hossain in
the daily news today, may11,2003.

04, liri l
heise, “violence against women: an integrated, ecological model” published in
violence against women, issue4, pp.262-290.

05, naher,
kamrun, ‘maternal mortality is high in bangladesh’ published in “the
independent”, dated December 05, 2003.


The overview
of the scope and nature of violence against women in Bangladesh leads one to
conclude that there are certain critical gaps in our knowledge and police .One
of the main reason is that the police makers either do not feel it is necessity
,or do not want to make public its failure to provide necessary protection to
women .As has been mentioned earlier ,that there is no systematic documentation
of women’s status due to a lack of proper survey or research methods and the
tendency to concentrate data collection in some areas at the cost of others .It
is necessary to turn ones attention to the creation of a systematic database
.The purpose of a database on violence against women , whether gathered
officially or unofficially , is to assist planning interventions to combat and
prevent violence . once a systematic database is built ,it can be used to
determine women friendly policies ,proper budget allocation ,enact or amend
legislation ,along with identifying funding priorities and evaluation of existing
measures ,steps , interventions and laws .besides law and order and criminal
justice administration ,data on violence against women could also be used by a
range of other agencies and academic disciplines committed to improving the
position of women in Bangladeshi society .