Bangladesh: Sexual harassment and the public woman

Himal South Asian
Bangladeshi women who face harassment from males lack any access to avenues of social or legal redress. The suicide of Simi Banu tragically highlights the need for the law to protect not only female ‘modesty’, but the very right to equality.
One of the most distressing aspects of this is the number of women and girls who have felt compelled to commit suicide in the aftermath of a violent and traumatic encounter. Their recourse to suicide could very well be the result of cultural constructions of honour and shame which do not allow for their acceptance into mainstream society.