66 Houses Damaged, 20 Hindu Homes Torched in Bangladesh During Durga Puja

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Over 66 houses were damaged and 20 homes of Hindus in Bangladesh were torched during the Durga Puja celebrations last week, authorities said on Monday, 18 October.

A mob of hundred people attacked a village in Rangpur district’s Pirganj upazila on Sunday, bdnews24.com reported.

The mob was reportedly triggered by a local Hindu youth who reportedly posted a photo offensive towards Islam.

No casualties were reported and 52 suspects have been arrested, stated a media report.

A special team has been deployed to arrest all those who were involved in the vandalism.

Also Read: Puja Violence Will Crush Bangladesh’s Already Shrinking Hindu Minority

In a tweet, Bangladesh Hindu Unity Council (BHUC) said, “At present Hindus are being attacked in Pirganj of Rangpur. Attacks on Hindus continue across the country. If this continues, it will be difficult for Hindus to survive in Bangladesh.”

<div class="paragraphs"><p>No casualties were reported and 52 suspects have been arrested.</p></div>

No casualties were reported and 52 suspects have been arrested.

The arson attack occurred amid rising communal tensions over attacks on Hindu temples in Cumilla, Chandpur, Chattogram, Cox’s Bazar, Bandarban, Moulvibazar, Gazipur, Chapainawabganj, Feni and other districts.

The tensions began rising as the minority Hindus, who constitute 9 per cent of Bangladesh’s population, celebrated Durga Puja last week. The Bangladesh Hindu-Buddhist-Christian Unity Council said at least 70 puja pavilions and temples were attacked, reported The Wire.

The assailants had vandalised and looted several temples and a number of shops owned by Hindus and torched vehicles in several districts, including Dhaka.

On Wednesday, over 80 locations were attacked in Comilla, leading to further unrest across Bangladesh. On Saturday, Hindu-owned temples and shops in Feni, about 157 km from Dhaka, were vandalised, said reports.

The clashes left at least 40 people injured.

On Thursday, Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina vowed to punish all those who were involved in the attacks on Hindu temples and Durga Puja venues. “The incidents in Comilla are being thoroughly investigated. Nobody will be spared. It doesn’t matter which religion they belong to. They will be hunted down and punished,” she said.

The protesters have called for the formation of a separate ministry to handle affairs related to minority groups.

(With inputs from The Wire and bdnews24.com.)

Also Read: 'How Can Sheikh Hasina Let This Happen': Javed Akhtar on Violence in Bangladesh

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