Staff Correspondent: Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina yesterday said every person involved in the killing of Feni madrasa girl Nusrat Jahan Rafi will be booked and given exemplary punishment so that no one dares to commit such heinous act.
“We’ve already arrested some culprits and others will be arrested. No one will be spared. We won’t allow anyone to go unpunished. They all have to get exemplary punishment so that no one dares to commit such incident in the future,” she said.
The Prime Minister was giving her introductory speech at a meeting of Awami League Advisory Council members at her official residence Ganobahban.
Nusrat, a student of Sonagazi Islamia Senior Fazil Madrasa in Sonagazir upazila of Feni, was set ablaze on April 6 allegedly for refusing to withdraw a case filed against principal Sirajuddoula of the madrasa for sexually harassing her last month.
Only a few minutes before the start of the Alim exam, four unidentified people allegedly took Nusrat to the rooftop of the three-storey administrative building of the madrasa saying one of her friends was being assaulted there and set her on fire at one stage of argument over withdrawing the case.
After fighting for her life for five days, the madrasa girl died at Dhaka Medical College Hospital on Wednesday night.
Sheikh Hasina, also the chief of ruling Awami League, said Nusrat was assaulted by the madrasa principal and she was brutally killed by setting fire on her. “I don’t have words to condemn this heinous act. I tried my level best to save the girl, even I tried to send her to Singapore,” she said.
Blaming the BNP-Jamaat nexus for introducing the trend of killing people through arson attacks in the country, the Prime Minister said in 2013, they tried this to resist the election while in 2015, they did the same in the name of toppling the AL government. “There should be public awareness in this regard,” she said.
Talking about repeated fire incidents in the country, she said those who use houses, offices and buildings have their own responsibilities. “They have to ensure how they can get out of a building and there should be extinguishing arrangement if there’s any fire incident,” she said.
The Prime Minister asked the architects, engineers and authorities concerned who give approval to a building to be more cautious while constructing any structure. “The plan of a building should be done considering the weather, climate and other related aspects. The mentality of not sparing an inch of space has to be changed. What type of attitude is this?” she said.
She put emphasis on keeping own arrangements to prevent any fire incident, saying the government is doing whatever necessary for the same purpose.
Hasina mentioned that the government has procured ladders and cranes which could reach upto 22-storey buildings and more.
She also briefly described various initiatives taken by the government, including setting up at least one fire service station in each upazila, to equip the Fire Service and Civil Defence of the country.
The Prime Minister also came down heavily on illegal construction of floors defying the approved design. “After taking approval for 18 floors, one constructed 22 floors. This type of irregularity has to be stopped,” she said apparently referring to Banani’s FR Tower where 26 people were killed in a fire on March 28.