According to law enforcement officers' latest monthly report to the home ministry, 557 murders were committed across the country between September and October this year.
The report added that 287 murders took place in October, compared to 270 in September, indicating that killings have increased despite the ongoing Covid-19 crisis.
Submitted on 29 November, the report also points out that despite the recent imposition of the death penalty, 913 rapes were reported in October, an increase from 651 in September.
However, only one encounter took place between September and October. Law enforcement mentioned no encounters in September, and a lone incident in the Rajbari area in October.
Domestic violence against women has also spiked, as 1,903 cases were reported in October, an increase from 1,621 in September. The report mentions that compared to April and May this year, incidents of rape and domestic violence against women have increased in recent months.
The report further mentions that activities of teenage gangs in Dhaka, Chattogram, and Barisal metropolitan areas have gone up, contributing to the increase in murders, rapes and violence against women.
The law enforcement agencies recommended stepping up surveillance and putting more effort into making arrests if any crimes are reported. They also recommended conducting raids against militants and other quarters that are actively trying to create unrest.
Despite repeated attempts to reach police headquarters, no comment on the matter was received till the filing of this report.
Speaking to The Business Standard, former inspector general of police AKM Shahidul Haque said, "Many have lost their jobs and sources of income as a result of the Covid-19 pandemic. Under such circumstances, crimes, such as murders, have increased."
Many have lost their jobs and sources of income as a result of the Covid-19 pandemic. Under such circumstances, crimes, such as murders, have increased
Commenting on the decrease in encounters, he said, "Personally, I do not support crossfires. Encounters have dropped since the murder of retired Army Major Sinha Md Rashed Khan, as the police are now more cautious.
Responding to a query, Nur Khan Liton, general secretary of rights body Ain O Salish Kendra (ASK) said, "The number of crossfires has dropped since the July 31 murder of retired Army Major Sinha Md Rashed Khan.
"But the overall human rights situation in the country has not improved. Incidents such as custodial deaths, murders, rapes and domestic violence have gone up in the last few months."
ASK data shows that between January and October this year, 57 people died while in custody of various law enforcement agencies, adding that 293 people died in custody in the last three years.