Dhaka: Amidst the trauma and misfortune of the Dhaka terror attack, a story of commendable courage of a woman who chose death over surrendering to the terrorist’s demands has since then gone viral with hundreds of shares and reactions from people across the world.
Two Bangladeshi women, one of whom was Ishrat Akhond, were also among the 20 foreigners who were killed on Friday night.
Ishrat, 45 was hacked to death for disobeying them and standing up for principles. She was the Human Resources Director of ZXY International FZCO, one of the largest garments manufacturing company. She was fondly called Nilu Apu by her friends.
Kumar, who was a friend of Akhond wrote a heart-rendering eulogy to Ishrat saying: “My friend Ishrat was brutally tortured and killed by terrorist in a Dhaka restaurant yesterday when she was there with several Italian Fashion Designers.
Most of the Muslim Bangladeshis were spared after they identified themselves and recited lines from the Koran. Ishrat who was not wearing a Hijab and neither wanted to prove herself was hacked to death with a machete”,
Akhond was a member of the Bangladesh-German Chamber of Commerce — a bilateral business organisation promoting trade between the two countries — and was working on to become a member of its election committee.
A former colleague in the chamber spoke about Akhond saying, “was an invaluable member of the Chamber and had just recently finished conducting its elections. But her real love was art. And she was constantly promoting young artists. When I went to her place for dinner last year, she wanted to discuss a number of issues, including what she should do in the future. Her flat, in Gulshan I, was absolutely beautiful, each wall and corner adorned with beautiful art”.
Friday's attack has shocked Bangladesh and analysts have said that as IS loses territory in Iraq and Syria and its finances get drained, it may be trying to build affiliates in other countries like Bangladesh and exploit disaffected youths.
The gunmen rushed into the Holey Artisan Bakery late on Friday, before killing at least 20 people once they had separated foreigners from locals. Six suspects were killed and seventh was captured and is in the hospital.
The Dhaka restaurant attack was the worst since 2005, when JMB set off a series of bombs throughout Bangladesh in the space of an hour. Subsequent suicide attacks on courthouses killed at least 25 people.