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Women sexually assaulted at Dhaka University amid Bengali New Year celebrations

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Several women have been sexually assaulted by a group of rouge youths at Dhaka University when they went there to join the Bengali New Year celebrations. Bangladesh Students' Union’s DU chapter President Liton Nandi broke his right arm during an attack by those youths when he tried to stop them on Tuesday evening.   The university’s acting Proctor Prof Amzad Ali blamed police’s irresponsibility for letting such assaults on women take place.   But Shahbagh Police Station OC Sirajul Islam claimed only some ’isolated events’ occurred even though they were vigilant.   He said police were trying to identify the perpetrators.   A string of festivities was being held on the campus and Suhrawardy Udyan to mark the first day of the Bengali year, Pahela Baishakh.   Many people from different areas across the capital had come to join the festivities in the hotspot. Witnesses said there were at least 30 youths in the group that assaulted the women in TSC and Suhrawardy Udyan gate areas. Police charged batons briefly on the crowd to stop them, but that did not work, they said. Liton Nandi told bdnews24.com one woman fell down when the rouge youths started assaulting her and tried to take her clothes off in public.  “They started beating me when I tried to save her. I collapsed too and broke my arm during the attack.” He said he saved that woman’s honour by giving her the Panjabi he was wearing. Nandi later received treatment at the Dhaka Medical College and Hospital. Students’ Union, Pragatishil Chhatra Jote and other leftist student organisations have condemned the assaults on women. They announced demonstrations for Wednesday on the campus demanding immediate arrest of the assaulters. Acting Proctor Prof Ali told bdnews24.com: “The university authorities had asked police to close the gates of Suhrawardy Udyan by 4pm. But they did not do that.” “We have asked police to find the culprits immediately.” Shahbagh police OC Islam said, “Charging batons failed to stop the youths during those isolated incidents.” He said they were checking CCTV footages to identify them. JnU students harass females Jagannath University students beat a member of Bangladesh Chhatra League for harassing female students on a university bus. That very BCL activist ‘Nazmul’, a political science seventh batch student, minutes later assaulted Bangla Tribune newspaper’s JnU Correspondent ‘Rohan’ for taking his photos. The events took place on Tuesday afternoon at Chankharpool when two buses of the university – ‘Uttaran’ and ‘Anirban’ – were returning from campus after the Pahela Baishakh celebrations, according to witnesses. Students of Uttaran bus said several members of the ruling Awami League’s student wing who were with the JnU unit’s Organising Secretary ‘Suranjan’ were teasing the female students.   Other students beat them and shoved them off the bus at Chankharpool. Rohan, who was riding Anirban bus right behind Uttaran, got down to take pictures of Nazmul and those with him. “The BCL members including Nazmul, Alauddin and Chanchal attacked me for this and deleted the photos from my camera,” the journalist told bdnews24.com. “They also threatened me.” BCL leader Suranjan said he did not know anyone by the name of Nazmul.  “But I apologise for the actions of our activists Alauddin and Chanchal. “I will take actions against them for eve teasing and assaulting a journalist,” he told bdnews24.com. Jagannath University’s acting Proctor Nur Mohammad said the authorities would take measures if they received complaints.--bdnews24.com

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