Arrests in teenagers lashing death

Four
people including a Muslim cleric have been arrested in Bangladesh in connection
with the death of 14-year-old girl who was publicly lashed.

The
teenager was accused of having an affair with a married man, police say, and
the punishment was given under Islamic Sharia law.

Hena
Begum’s family members said a village court consisting of elders and clerics
passed the sentence.

She
was alleged to have had the affair with her cousin and received 80 lashes.

The
family members of the married man also allegedly beat the girl up a day before
the village court passed the sentence in the district of Shariatpur.

Hena Begum died after being taken
to hospital

“Her
family members said she was admitted to a hospital after the incident and she
died six days later.

The
village elders also asked the girl’s father to pay a fine of about $700,”
district superintendent of police, AKM Shahidur Rahman, said.

He
said it had not been established yet whether she died because of the punishment
she received or another reason.

“We
are still waiting for the post-mortem report.

In
the meantime, we are also looking for another 14 people including a teacher
from a local madrassa in connection with this case,” Mr Rahman said.

Activists
say dozens of fatwas – or religious rulings – are issued under Sharia law each
year by village clergy in Bangladesh.

“What
sort of justice is this?

My
daughter has been beaten to death in the name of justice. If it had been a
proper court then my daughter would not have died,” Dorbesh Khan, the
father of Hena Begum said.

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