Muslim mother caned for talking to a Hindu man in Bangladesh under Sharia law
Posted by jagoindia on June 14, 2009
Canwest News Service June 7, 2009
A Muslim mother has been caned for talking to a Hindu man in Bangladesh, police said Saturday, prompting fresh concerns about a rise in harsh treatment of women under strict Islamic law.
The punishment was carried out in a remote village on the orders of village elders, said local police chief Enamul Monowar.
The elders found Kamala Begum, 38,a mother of four, guilty under Islamic sharia law of chatting with an unidentified Hindu man, Monowar said. Hindus make up around 10 per cent of Bangladesh’s population.
“The villagers got bundles of 25 sticks and hit her four times on the back. They claimed it was a symbolic punishment. But she’s humiliated and has been in great mental pain,”Monowar said.
Police have arrested one man and are looking for others who meted out the punishment to the woman in Shason in northeastern Bangladesh, Monowar said.
It is the third such reported case in two weeks and stirred concern among women’s groups in Muslim majority but officially secular Bangladesh about what they say is a rise in brutal treatment of women under locally applied Islamic laws.
“In the last few months, we have seen villagers invoking sharia to mete out barbaric punishments to women,” said Salma Ali, head of rights group Bangladesh National Woman Lawyers Association.
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