Media reports on abuse of women and children drop. Activists say that’s not the real picture

  • Staff Correspondent,
    Published: 2020-08-11 21:42:59 BdST


Media reports on abuse of women and children dropped between March and July by around 37 percent year on year, according to an analysis by a women’s rights group.

Bangladesh Mahila Parishad, however, believes the coronavirus pandemic hindered the ways for complaining about abuses, which has led to fewer reports of such incidents.

The rate of abuse of women and children has actually gone up, says the organisation’s General Secretary Maleka Banu.

It published the analysis of reports from 13 national newspapers on Tuesday.

In the five months from March, the newspapers reported 1,228 incidents of violence against women and children.

“It’s not that the mass media are reporting all the incidents. We, who are working on this, have seen that the number of incidents of abuse has increased much higher than before,” Maleka said.

“Everyone has their limitations – including the victims, the media and us,” she explained, adding that the media are not reporting incidents other than the much discussed ones amid the pandemic situation.

In July, the newspapers reported 235 incidents of women and children abuse, including 90 rapes, 14 gang-rapes, three murders after rape, nine rape attempts and three sexual harassments.

As many as seven women died from torture for dowry in the month. The number of women and children killed for different reasons was 46. At least 10 women died by suicide following abuse.

The incidents in July also include five child marriages, five cybercrimes and six of torture of house helps.