On September 1, 2021, a group of at least 10 youths, alleged to be members of the Bangladesh Chhatra League (BCL), attacked a group of students holding a hunger strike protest demanding the reopening of educational institutions. At least four students were reportedly injured.
Students from multiple universities were holding their hunger strike in a central area of Rajshahi when the attack occurred.
A BCL representative denied allegations that his group was behind the attack.
Scholars at Risk is concerned by a violent attack on peaceful student protesters. State authorities should take necessary, responsible actions to prevent and respond to such incidents, including by carrying out investigations and holding perpetrators responsible, in accordance with international human rights standards. In addition to the harm to the immediate victims, such attacks on student expression undermine academic freedom and democratic society generally.
*SAR identified this incident in data made publicly available by the Armed Conflict Location & Event Data Project (ACLED).