11/03/2016, 09.23
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Bangladesh, Hindu temples and faithful attacked over false image "insulting Islam"

by Sumon Corraya

At least 15 temples assaulted, houses and stores ransacked. Islamic radicals have sought Hindus house by house. The violence triggered by a photo depicting the god Shiva sitting on the Kaaba, the holiest site of Islam.


Dhaka (AsiaNews) - About 15 Muslims were arrested for having set fire to temples and violently beating devout Hindus of Nasirnagar area in Brahmanbaria district, in the central-eastern part of Bangladesh.

The sectarian attack was triggered by a false picture published on the Facebook profile of a young Hindu, with contents "insulting to Islam." Meanwhile activist organizations have condemned the violence and urged the authorities to conduct a swift investigation.

The incident occurred on 29 October. According to the attackers, a Hindu named Rasuraj Das posted on his personal account a picture of the god Shiva, while enthroned on the Kaaba in Mecca, the holiest place in the Islamic religion. The boy, who was also arrested by the police, has denied any wrongdoing and said that in all probability his profile was targeted by hackers.

Even before checking the facts, the event triggered a violent reaction from members of two Islamic groups, Touhidi Janata and Ahle Sunnat Wal Jamaat. On October 30, they have organized protests against the comment that "offends the religious sentiments of Muslims."

Adesh Chandra Dev, local president of the Hindu Buddhist Christian Unity, told AsiaNews that at that point the situation worsened: "The event incited the attack against our community. 15 temples were attacked and hundreds of homes; pillaged".

Sankar Gopal Das, a Hindu priest, added that the police were present during the attacks, but failed to stop the large number of attackers. The religious leader, injured in the attack, recalls: "It was horrible. Islamists have broken windows and doors in search of Hindus who had taken refuge in their homes. Many were injured. "

Now the area is guarded by agents. But the activists point out: "Despite their presence, people live in fear of new attacks. We demand that impartial investigations are conducted ".

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