Don’t tell anyone If you are assaulted sexually

Esrat Eve
Posted April 17, 2015 from Bangladesh
sexual assault

You might feel uncomfortable with the title statement but trust me this is what my culture , my society and my community taught me . The reason behind is the fear of shame of my family! The fear is all about being boycott from the society because still there are people in this 21st century (!) who believe that “If a girl is being assaulted sexually then it’s definitely her fault “. This might sounds crazy to you but unfortunately it is a brutal truth. However, now you might be thinking what made me risk my life and raise my voice against this? Let’s unfold the reason with a news statement from a renowned national newspaper of my country.

“The joyous celebration of the Bangalee's biggest festival -- Pahela Baishakh -- was tainted by incidents of sexual assault on women on the Dhaka University campus Tuesday evening, sparking widespread public outrage.Witnesses said some 30 to 40 rowdy youths assaulted and sexually harassed around 20 women for about two hours at the Suhrawardy Park gate near the TSC area around 6:00pm.

Witness’ account

"The youths were divided into three groups and each group had 10-12 of them. People everywhere around were blowing vuvuzela so loudly that nobody could hear the victims' cry for help," he said, adding thousands of people were milling around the area, making it difficult for them to prevent the attackers.After a heart and soul try he rescued a 10-year-old minor girl from the spot."Her dress was torn. I was shocked to see there were bite marks on her body. She was seriously injured," he said. "The girl came with her elder brother and mother. Her brother was beaten by one group while another took the mother away."Masudur Rahman, another Student Union activist, said they could not recognize anybody due to the lack of light at dusk.Amit and Masud said their group caught five of the offenders and handed them over to the police. When they inquired about them two hours later, police told them that all of them had been released. Of the five, two were Dhaka University students.Contacted ,police officer said when they went to the place after hearing about the incident, they did not find anyone involved in the assault."None came to us with any complaint [of sexual harassment]," he said.

Now I am delivering the latest news to you -Even three days after the incident, police could not even identify the culprits! Why would the culprits be identified because they are invisible beings in this earth.They probably walk under the invisibly cloak of a powerful politician or may be a business magnet. Therefore there is no punishment for them.On the other hand, no wonder some of the victims might attempt to suicide as they have no where to go and share.I believe this is the high time to raise voice and shout louder against sexual assault. We cannot let the culprits fly freely in our society. I am going to raise my voice against this and against every sexual assault that happened behind the door of my house as well as yours.

My letter to you :

Dear friend ,

Take my warm hugs. I want to give self defense training to the women of my city. Unfortunately we do not have any options of self defense coaching in Bangladesh for particularly girls. Therefore anyone who wants to help me ( directly- by partnering with my non-profit or indirectly- by connecting with the proper source ) is highly appreciated.I wish you all a happy and safe life.

Pouring limitless love,

Eve

The Path to Participation Initiative from World Pulse and No Ceilings

Comments 12

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Emily Garcia
Apr 17, 2015
Apr 17, 2015

Hello Eve,

Thank you for speaking out on this issue. I want to say 'I don't believe it' and 'this is not happening', but I know that sadly what you say is all too true. I personally have experienced sexual harrasment on three continents. And it each time I felt embarrased and didn't say anything...Violence against women is a global epidemic not bound by borders. We need to speak out.

Thank you for posting about your initiative to start self-defense coaching in Bangladesh. I encourage you to post your call for support on our Resource Exchange page as a "need": https://www.worldpulse.com/en/community/resources​ 

Also, I know another community member here doing this exact work with children in South Africa. Her name is Monica Clarke and here is a link to her profile if you'd like to get in touch with her: https://www.worldpulse.com/en/community/users/monica-clarke 

Lasty, World Pulse has just launched the Path to Participation Initiative with No Ceilings. One of the issue's we're focusing on for this initiative is GBV. We would love to have you submit your own story to this call to action: https://www.worldpulse.com/en/get-involved/take-action/path-to-participation

Thank you again for sharing!

Kind regards,

Emily

Esrat Eve
Apr 25, 2015
Apr 25, 2015

Hey Emily,

First of all I am very sorry for the belated reply :) I hope you are doing well. Thank you a lot for your kind warm words and support. I am going to post this in resources very soon as I really want to start an awareness campaign regarding sexual assault.

Keep in touch and keep up the good work :)

Hugs :))))

OMagdalena
Apr 19, 2015
Apr 19, 2015

Dear Eve,

Thank you for sharig it and being so brave to stand up for this! 

I also was speechless about the story. I try to imagine how difficult it is for a girl to say loud about what happened to her when everyone tends to react that it was her fault. It is difficult to see that this is happening in 21st century.

I truly support your initiative!

Best,

Magdalena

Esrat Eve
Apr 25, 2015
Apr 25, 2015

Hey Magdalena, I am sorry for the belated reply. Thank you for your kind words and support. I need some powerhouse women to campaign against sexual assault. I hope you can come on board with us.

Take care! Hugs, Eve

kabeer live
Apr 24, 2015
Apr 24, 2015

Hello Eve, indeed its very much unfortunate and disgusting whatever happened there, and I offer my salute to you as u stand up and being so brave and honest, , religious fanaticism is on rise and as usual frist on firing line is women's until we all stand and rise our voice (I would say until we shout our heart out) thus deaf ear of society heard us.once again anything you need in this cause I love to help you.kabeer

Esrat Eve
Apr 25, 2015
Apr 25, 2015

Hey Kabeer,

What an amazing soul you are :) Thank you, my friend and "yes"  we have to shout out loud against this. Anyways, I have a plan to start a campaign in SAARC countries. Let's see what happens.

Thanks a lot :)

Take care.

Apr 25, 2015
Apr 25, 2015
This comment has been removed by the commenter or a moderator.
Deborah Dauda
Apr 26, 2015
Apr 26, 2015

Hey Eve: Thank you for sharing this story. As disgusting and deplorable as this is, I'm not surprised of the lack of inaction and victim shaming- which is what makes sexual violence and assault so widespread. I've been a victim of sexual harrassment, and it wasn't until recently that I began to fully open up about it. Its a serious issue in the community I grew up in, in Lagos, and I wish there was an avenue to feel empowered and protected (i..e. via self defence). That's why your idea is fantastic. What age group are you interested in working with? I believe young girls starting in primary school and upward should be involved in/ taught self defence because girls experience this in a much younger age than we think. There's a program that teaches young women self defence in east Africa ( Uganda or Kenya) that was recently evaluated by one of my professor. I read dome testimonies of these women, and its so inspiring. Once I have the details I will send you a message- you could contact them and share ideas in lessons learned and strategies. I wish you the best! Deborah

Esrat Eve
Apr 27, 2015
Apr 27, 2015

Hey Deborah, Thank you so much, honey :) You are just awesome and I can total resonate with you. I am so grateful for your kind words. I would love to know about the program and get in touch with; this will be a great help.

Thank you! Thank you! Thank you!

You can also add me on facebook if you want-https://www.facebook.com/profile.php?id=100008883992070

Love and Hugs, eve

vrclark
Apr 27, 2015
Apr 27, 2015

Esrat, My hand goes to my heart and I pause as I read your journal entry. How societies have allowed the level of male dominance, privilege and supremacy to continue the destruction, tragic emotional and physical injury and assault to not only the female gender, but the vulnerable (your reference to the 10 year old girl) is something I'm not sure we will ever understand. How groups of boys/men, since the beginning of time, feel they have the "right" to cross the human boundary of a girl's/woman's being is horrifying. Horrifying when it's one person, or 100's, sexually assaulted by another, and beyond comprehension when it's done with support of groups engaging in this behavior, never caught, never accountable for their actions… and indeed, who KNOWS who is partaking (cloaked and invisible)?? Who does this? Or knows about it and says nothing? Does nothing.? Men can no longer stand by when they know something is wrong and not speak up, not do something. I am a survivor of sexual assault and domestic violence, and I work in the field of supporting other women who also are victims to find their voice, and to learn how to develop healthy boundaries, empower themselves with choice, and to speak out about the injustices done to them and their sisters. We need a world of people with your voice and courage, Esrat, to change this pattern of pain and oppression that continues to be inflicted and condoned by our male counterparts, and sadly, by those never held accountable. We do need to reach the young (females and males) with prevention education and awareness if this is going to ever change. Thank you for your voice!

Esrat Eve
Apr 27, 2015
Apr 27, 2015

Dear Veronica,

Thank you for the kind words and so much appreciation for your work. I have been sexually assaulted few times from childhood to teenage and the ironic part was that I was in shame that what my family think of me. But my education and experience gave me power to raise my voice.And I believe this is the high time as we are bringing a wave of change to the world.

Please, keep in touch and take care :)

Love and hugs,

eve

bitani
Apr 29, 2015
Apr 29, 2015

Dear Eve,

I salute you for your courage. The incident you described is really horrible. But believe me, unfortunately, there are many societies -including mine- where women are always blamed.

I totally agree with your sentence: "Why would the culprits be identified because they are invisible beings in this earth.They probably walk under the invisibly cloak of a powerful politician or may be a business magnet."

I think every woman experiences assault, to a lesser to larger degree. The key to facing these assaults is honesty even if society blames us for speaking out, we still know we are speaking the truth and that only by raising our voices fellow women will speak out.

best regards,

Bayan

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