02/08/2016, 15.21
BANGLADESH

Bangladesh, Catholic nuns robbed and beaten in the night

Sumon Corraya

A group of about 20 people attacked the Karpashdanga church and a convent of the catechists of the Immaculate Heart of Mary. The related security guards and held at gunpoint. A religious refuses to hand over the money - in the house to pay a bricklaying - and is slapped with violence. Christian activist: "alarming signal, the sisters have always been very respected in the country."

Dhaka (AsiaNews) - A crowd of about 20 people attacked on the night a convent of nuns and a Catholic church in Chuadanga district, 161 km west of the capital Dhaka. The culprits robbed religious using intimidation and violence, and ransacked the church. The police, informed, has opened an investigation. However, a Christian leader points out to AsiaNews that it is "worrisome" that now even the religious are immune from violence in the country.

The attack took place around midnight between 6 and 7 February. Viewfinder Karpashdanga the church, adjacent to a convent of the catechists of the Immaculate Heart of Mary (v. Photo). This is a diocesan congregation, founded in 1951 by the then Bishop of Dinajpur Msgr. Joseph Obert, PIME (Pontifical Institute for Foreign Missions). The parish priest, Fr. Arun Halsona, was in the capital for pastoral reasons: the assailants tied up the two security guards and entered armed.

At first they went into the church, where they destroyed some prayer books. Then they entered the monastery, where three sisters were sleeping: they wake up and kept under the threat of arms while carrying out the robbery. Among the stolen mobile phones, some objects of little value and above 350 thousand rupees Bangladeshis (about 4 thousand euro) that the sisters were in their home to pay a bricklaying in the convent. Taken away even the religious clothes.

One of them was slapped forcefully because she had refused to hand over the money, but luckily the group did not undergo other physical abuse. However, now they live in fear: the police, informed of the facts, has opened an investigation but so far has failed to identify the culprits.

Nirmal Rozario, general secretary of the Christian Association of Bangladesh, told AsiaNews: "We are very concerned, as it was also hit a place guarded by security officers. But mainly because end up in the crosshairs this time were the sisters: in our country the religious have always been very respected, but this state of affairs seems to be over. " For the activist, "the government is close to minorities and does everything to help us, but someone wants to create anarchy in the country. That's because they serve just and rapid investigations against the perpetrators of such acts".

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