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Bangladesh communal violence: Hindus and Muslims hold protests; police book over 4000 people for clashes

06:21 PM Oct 17, 2021 | FPJ Web Desk

After the attacks on the Hindu community in Bangladesh in the Saturday violence that erupted in the Capital city of Dhaka and Chittagong following a social media image showing the Quaran being put on the feet of Durga, a Hindu temple was vandalized in the fresh communal unrest while at least 2 Hindu and 4 Muslims have died in the clash.

Besides vandalizing Durga Puja pandals, protesters have also targeted temples, including that of the renowned ISKCON community in the Friday violence. The clashes left at least 40 people, including the officer-in-charge Nizamuddin of Feni Model Police Station, injured as per the reports.

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Over 10,000 protestors took to streets outside the main mosque of the capital Dhaka after the Saturday night clashes with the police. The Muslim-majority crowd gathered to protest against the blasphemy image were heard chanting "Down with the enemies of the Islam" and "Hang the culprits."

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"We ask the government to arrest those who defamed the Quran by putting it at the feet of an idol in Cumilla," Mosaddek Billah Al Madani, president of Bangladesh’s Islami Movement, the Dhaka Tribune reported.

Separately, in a nearby intersection, about 1,000 Hindus protested the attacks on temples and the killing of two Hindu devotees in another district where several temples were vandalized by Muslim mobs.

Reportedly, the police in Dhaka have booked more than 4,000 named and unnamed protesters after clashes broke out between security forces and demonstrators. The cases have been filed across three police stations in the city — Paltan, Ramna, and Chawkbazar — for vandalism, assaulting security personnel, and obstruction of government duty, officials said.

On Saturday night, authorities deployed additional police forces and the paramilitary force — Border Guard Bangladesh (BGB), after several temples and businesses owned by Hindus were vandalized and robbed during clashes that lasted from 4.30 pm (local time) to midnight, the report said.

Meanwhile, in the country's southeastern port city of Chittagong, the Bangladesh Hindu Buddhist Christian Unity Council announced a sit-in and hunger strike from 23 October in protest against the attacks during the Durga Puja celebrations.

Following the incidents of vandalism and unrest in the country, Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina promised to bring to justice the culprits behind the violence, saying anyone involved in the attacks on Hindu temples and Durga Puja venues in Comilla will not be spared.

Meanwhile, the vice-president of ISKCON, Kolkata, Radharaman Das has condemned the attack on the ISKCON temple in Bangladesh and urged Prime Minister Narendra Modi to hold talks with Bangladesh Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina to end the cycle of violence.

(with inputs from sources)

Also Read: 'Why is PMO silent?': Trinamool Congress after ISKCON temple vandalised in Bangladesh

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