<i>Minor girl escapes forced marriage </i>
Bravely resisting forced marriage arranged by her parents, a minor girl in Chirirbandar upazila in the district has fled from her home and taken shelter at the office of CARE Bangladesh.
The girl, Nur Jahan Nahar Sathi, 14, is the daughter of Nur Islam of village Basudevpur in Chirirbandar upazila and a class nine student of Janani Adarsha Girls High School.
Sathi told The Daily Star that her parents and relatives arranged her marriage with Ronju Miah, a 25-year-old rickshaw puller, of the same village.
On January 22 midnight she was wakened by her mother to see a number of guests and decoration.
When Md Nazrul Islam, a Muslim cleric started administering the marriage ritual, Sathi rejected it outright.
Then her parents and relatives beat her up and confined her with Ronju inside a room where she resisted the man's attempt for physical relation.
On January 27 she fled from her home and went to Youth Forum in Chirirbandar, a project of CARE Bangladesh, and informed them of the matter.
Project director of Care Bangladesh, Saida Nourin, who took steps for her safe custody, said her organisation will provide for her smooth growing up including her study.
Chirirbandar UNO Anarkoli Mahbub, who officially handed over Sathi to the safe custody of Care Bangladesh, told The Daily Star that she instructed police to ensure her safety.
Sathi demanded punishment of the persons who arranged her premature marriage against her will.
Sathi's father Nur Islam, 40, said he had decided to marry her daughter off due to poverty.